14 months old, week 1
Upper left and right cuspids (canines) have erupted. For the past few weeks, Juli sometimes feeds herself with a spoon. She leans a broom or any kind of long sticks upright against a corner of the wall or doorway.
With Juli's ability to express more ASL words, I learned more about how she perceived the world and how she categorized things.
For example, there was a black wall with water falling down surrounded by different kinds of plants at a conservatory. Juli noticed it and uttered bath. I replied ix-loc water falling-down.
Next day or two, we took Juli to SPCA. There was a water falling wall. Juli stood in front of it and looked. She produced bath. I responded water. Sure enough, Juli responded by producing water (new production, see video)
Returning home from SPCA, Juli did show her understanding of categorizing cats from dogs.
A banana mini-muffin was her favorite. Two weeks or so ago, when Juli pointed to the cabinet for that snack, I opened the cabinet door to find out what she wanted. She pointed at the mini-muffin. I signed oh, ix-you want more. From right there on, Juli produced more in reference to cookies, muffins, and even a pack of fruit gummies (that I had never introduced her to, after all they are sweets that I didn't bother talking about or introducing). After all it was easier for her to produce more than cookie or any other snack.
Juli had been pointing to a picture of the moon in books. At the end of this week, I took Juli out for a stroller walk (warm weather). Juli produced [one-handed, right-handed, 20-handshape on headside repeatedly. I look puzzled. Juli then pointed at something in the sky behind me. I turned around. Aha, it was sun.
To double check, I asked where moon?. Juli pointed at the sun. Fascinating. Interesting how a child at this age perceives the world -- are the moon and the sun are one and the same?
Out for a stroller walk and off-stroller walk, Juli pointed at many evergreens in the neighbourhood and produced Christmas (or perhaps tree). Either these evergreens looked like a Christmas tree or Juli's productions for "tree" and "Christmas" look alike.
Making a request
Juli is able to make a request a few things she wished. For example, last week she would request a bath while she was eating or toddling around.
Juli was able to make a request which book she wanted from a pile of books on the kitchen table. She once pointed to the book and produced dog (tapping on her leg). I handed her a book with the cover of a dog.
The other day Juli pointed to one of the books and produced gorilla and I handed her the right book. For the rest of the books, I had to make a guesswork.
Requesting for a cookie by pointing to the kitchen cabinet and uttering more is very common. Sometimes pointing at something is sufficient for Juli and me to understand. For example, a light to turn on in the basement.
Use of ASL words
The following words that Juli has used with references in the last couple of weeks: girl (referring to the girl in the book), laundry (slightly bent 5-handshape+twisting wrist, ball (different production), moon (same for "sun"), firefigther (same for "father"), cold with mouth morpheme "razzy" (perfect and clear production) please, butterfly (new, emerging), Christmas (referring to Christmas boxes in the basement), milk and some reguarly used ASL words.
A new thing I recognized Juli's production is her own signed name with the help of contexts.
In the past posts, I mentioned that when Juli recognized herself in a photograph, she pointed to herself. But, when I signed her name Juli, she usually would turn to gaze and/or point at the photograph of herself on the refrigerator.
Now when she looked at the photograph of herself, she signed her own name (index finger moving down repeatedly from her chin or lower lip). That production is similar to the regular production of "red" in ASL.
At this point, I'm uncertain how or when she pointed to herself in some contexts but produced her signed name in other contexts. Maybe, it's nothing. Maybe there is a specific reason. It's something to look closely in the next days and weeks.
One morning Juli came across a photograph of her father Dude. Dude asked who ix-photograph?. Juli grinned, produced father (20-handshape) and finger-pointed at Dude. Dude nodded ix-me father.
Got a story to tell your experience and share it with others? Send an email to Handspeak. I'd love to hear about it, too.
Ava using BSL
Ava at 14 months old uses BSL (British Sign Language)
Both of Ava's parents are deaf that fortunately Ava was able to access language right from birth. The mother believes that "hearing parents should be given the chance to learn sign language and be able to communicate with their own child fully. We think its important to note that eventually it would be great to see this opportunity given to grandparents, siblings, and other family members/carers.
"Language is not a privilege, it is a right." -- YouTube, "nickbeese"
"I want HANDSPEAK to be a learning tool for my granddaughter to share with me. She is 14 months old and already signing letters. Although she has normal hearing, I believe that the more people she can communicate with the better she will be able to understand our world. She is also being taught Spanish by her mother (my daughter)." -- T. Schmitt, Pittsbugh, PA.