Signs on the Road
Vehicles on the road are a far more frequent sighting than vehicles in the sky. Because of this repeated exposure, your baby will probably learn these signs rather quickly. But don’t just wait for an automobile to pass by. Demonstrate these signs while you are stopped at red lights, riding a bus, or when you are a passenger in a car.CAR
CAR may be one of the easiest signs you and your baby will learn.
1. Hold your hands in front of you as if holding on to a steering wheel, as shown in Figure 16–2 .
2. Move your hands up and down as if steering the wheel.
In the beginning, your baby may use the sign for CAR to describe everything on wheels. If it is important to you that he uses the correct sign, just keep modeling it, but acknowledge his efforts. For example, if a truck drives by and your baby signs CAR, you could say, “You’re right, that does look like a car. It is a truck and it is bigger than a car.”
In most states, children are required to ride in a forward-facing car seat from the time they are one year old until they are four or five years old. After that, many states require children to ride in a booster seat until they are six, seven, or even eight years of age.
The sign for BUS (
The sign for MOTORCYCLE (
1. Hold your hands in front of you, curled up into fists, as if holding onto the handlebars of a motorcycle.
2. Twist your hands forward twice to indicate revving up the engine.
At first, your child may twist both hands when making the sign. Likewise, he may curl his hands into fists but neglect to twist either of them.
Sometimes a child who is interested in motorcycles is afraid of them up close. The loudness of the bike’s engine is probably the culprit. If your child is curious but afraid to get too close, hold him at a safe distance and then point out the various parts of the bike.
Don’t be surprised if your baby begins to form this sign every time he hears a loud engine, whether it belongs to a motorcycle or not. The distinct sound of a motorcycle is the way that some babies identify them. If you see that the engine does not belong to a motorcycle, praise your child anyway. Tell him that he is right, the car (or truck or lawn mower) does sound like a motorcycle. Then explain to him the differences in the vehicles. He may not understand your explanation, but it gives you an opportunity to converse with him, something that should be done frequently.TRUCK
The sign for TRUCK is almost identical to the sign for CAR, as you can see in Figure 16–3.
1. Hold your hands in front of you as if holding on to a steering wheel. The difference between this sign and the sign for CAR is that your hands are spread wider, as if holding the large steering wheel of a truck.
2. Move your hands side to side as if moving the wheel.
Because of the subtle difference between the two signs, your baby may appear to use the same sign to mean both “car” and “truck.” Just be sure to label the vehicles verbally as well to help your baby learn the proper names.