Currently there are several different resources available for a child who is non-vocal, meaning a child who does not currently use vocals to communicate. These include several modern AAC devices, Ipad applications, Picture exchange communication systems, and sign language.
While sign language is not nearly as modern or technologically advanced, it has several benefits to a child with Autism. Here are ways sign language could benefit your child:
- Sign language is easy to pair with vocals
- Sign language can be used simultaneously with vocals so that your child can learn the sign while hearing the word. This may promote your child to imitate sounds or vocal skills as well
- Sign language is consistent
- Since sign language uses body parts to communicate, it is easy to use in any location for your child and does not require you to remember extra items.
- Sign language promotes other learning skills
- Children learn sign language through imitation but can also label and speak conversationally with signs so it can be used similarly to vocal language
- Sign language is universally known
- While sign language is not known by everyone, it is a universal language and has a built in community that uses it and can communicate with others. Thus, your child will be able to communicate with others consistently in the future.
Information on sign language & classes: