Signs of Temper
Temper, temper! The older and more independent your child gets, the more he will display his temper. Fortunately for you, your baby is a signer and will probably have fewer temper tantrums than his non-signing peers. This is not to say that he won’t ever get angry or upset because of course he will. That is where the signs in this section will come in handy.
The signs for ANGRY and for MAD can be used interchangeably, but both are included here so that you can pick the one that you think will be easiest for your child to form and remember. It is not necessary to use both with your child. There is no point in introducing signs he can’t use, nor do you want to confuse him with multiple signs for the same word.
It isn’t only growing independence that leads to temper tantrums in a toddler. Boredom, tiredness, and hunger can all bring out the monster in your little one. Trying to head off these problems before they arise may help to reduce temper tantrums in your child.
The sign for ANGRY, as shown in Figure 18–8, is another sign that benefits from the use of facial expressions.
1. Hold your hand, palm toward you, in front of your face and bend your fingers in.
2. Pull your hand away while making an angry facial expression.
To demonstrate this sign, wait for indications that your child is angry, such as when he does not get his way. If he is too angry, of course, he will be unable to focus on the sign, so try to wait until he has calmed down a bit.MAD
As with ANGRY, timing is everything when it comes to modeling the sign for MAD (
1. Bend your fingers as if they were claws.
2. “Scratch” upward on your torso.
This may be the easier sign for your child to form; however, it might remind your child of the sign for BEAR (page 87). Be sure that your baby has one completely established before introducing the other.