Signs of Animals in the Water
A great place to model the signs for these water animals is at an aquarium, pet store, or even a neighborhood pond. If those options aren’t available to you, take inventory of your child’s bath toys. You may discover that you’ve got everything you need right in your own bathtub.FISH
There is a more commonly used, two-handed motion to indicate FISH, but the single-hand motion will probably be easier for your child to master (
1. Extend your hand as if offering a handshake.
2. Make your hand “swim” in a zigzag motion like the tail of a fish.
If you plan to use this sign for both the goldfish in the fish bowl and the fish on your baby’s plate, your baby may be confused. Consider using one form of the sign or the other, but not both, at least until your child is older and able to understand what she is eating.
Fish are beautiful creatures and come in a wide variety of colors and sizes. Use this to your child’s educational advantage. Point out the big fish versus the little fish and the shiny fish versus the dull fish. Show your child the fish with stripes and then the fish with spots, and the blue fish in comparison to the white fish.FROG
The sign for FROG, as shown in Figure 13–6, represents a frog’s vocal sac that expands when it croaks.
1. Rest your chin on the back of your hand with your fingers curled into a fist.
2. Flick your index and middle fingers outward twice to complete the sign.
It is not always easy to encounter a frog in your neighborhood. If you want to try, go outside on a warm damp evening with a flashlight. Look for frogs near puddles, ponds, rocks, and even in the wet grass.TURTLE
The sign for TURTLE (
1. Form the A hand shape, and hold it in front of your body with the thumb on top.
2. Use your other hand to cover up the A hand shape.
3. Wiggle your thumb back and forth a couple of times to indicate a turtle’s head peeking out of its shell.
After showing your child a turtle, either in person or in pictures, try playing this game to help your child to understand that a turtle does not go away when he retreats into his shell, but that he is simply hiding. Take a blanket and wrap it around your shoulders and neck with just your head peeking out. Tell your child that you are going to go into your shell like a turtle and then cover up your head with the blanket. Quickly reemerge and then let her have a turn playing the turtle.
The sale of turtle hatchlings that are fewer than four inches in length is prohibited in the United States. This ban was enacted in the 1970s as a way to reduce instances of salmonella infection in children, who are likely to put small turtles into their mouths.