My Favourite Things: Baby Sign Language

A long, long time ago (time flies!), before my children could talk, we came across the concept of baby sign language. One of my sisters had used it with her children, and I loved the idea of the little people in our family being able to communicate before they could speak!

Baby sign language is magic for the period of time when a baby grows in comprehension and can use their hands to make gestures, but before they can actually form the words. We’ve all been stuck at the place of trying to figure out what our toddler needs when they can’t tell us!

The signs we used with our children were based on Auslan, with a few adjustments made to make them more simple for the baby’s motor skills. We used only a handful of words, because they weren’t particularly interested in learning more than that, but certainly if the child wants to, there are many tools out there to keep learning words and developing their language skills in this way!

The words we used were: Please, Thank you, Sorry, All Done, More, Food/Eat and Drink.

It’s a bit difficult in a blog to write down how to do the signs, so I’ve made a quick video for you to have a look at! (As mentioned earlier, these were our ‘adaptations’ from Auslan, but they worked for us!)

Other resources and reading:

There are a couple of great sites I’ve found which provide a lot more information about this topic, and can give you the background of when to start signing, ways to practice, and the benefits behind it all.

Australian Baby Hands has a free PDF of some of the most common signs, and a great article on how to get started with baby signing.

Huggies has a lot of information on Baby Signing, too.

And at Baby Sign and Learn, you can download an app and get flashcards for the signs!


As some of the articles state, we started signing and speaking the words before our children could do them back to us. As they got older, we would help them with the sign as we said the words. And then they could sign for us, to let us know what they needed.

I’d love to hear if you have tried baby sign language with your children and how it went, or if it’s something that you would like to try in the future! Leave a comment below and let me know!

About The Author


Tanya lives in Canberra with her husband and two sons. She is passionate about helping women to live fulfilled, purposeful lives. She enjoys reading, cooking, craft and creating memorable moments for her family.

1 Comment

  • Sam


    I have been teaching my daughter sign language. It’s helped so much.
    I had learned some when I was at school and then got the Australian baby hands starter pack when I wad pregnant. Once my daughter started to respond to the signs I decided u wanted to pursue Auslan more and did a cit course. it was amazing and its been amazing to watch my daughter learn so quickly. She’s now 18 months old and knows 50 signs! It make communication so much easier. Would totally recommend it ?