Teach Your Child Makaton

Teaching your toddler sign language is great because it helps to:

  • Reduce your toddlers frustration
  • Reduce terrible two temper tantrums
  • Develop your childs communication skills
  • Develop your toddlers speech
  • Increase your child-parent bond
  • Develop your childs learning ability


Can you imagine living in a world where you know exactly what you want but you can't communicate it with anyone? Think how frustrating it would be to face a battle over every little thing just because you can't tell someone how you feel.

Welcome to your toddlers world.

By the time your baby starts moving around they already know what they want. When they start wanting things they can't reach or needing things that are not immediately around them, your child will start feeling frustrated and this situation can often spark the terrible twos temper tantrums.

There are ways of avoiding these terrible twos temper tantrums and one of these ways is to teach your child Makaton.

What is Makaton

Makaton is essentially sign language for babies and young children. It uses simple signs based on British sign language which allow your child to communicate with you, even before they are able to speak.

Makaton was developed by taking the most used words from the English language and using signs from British sign language to communicate them.

Makaton works because sign language forms symbols and pictures where as words are abstract and easily confussed. And it is this very point that means your toddler will pick up and understand the signs a lot easier than they will words and sentances.

Find out more information about Makaton.

Will Makaton delay my toddlers speech?

No. Makaton should be used in conjunction with speech. Therefore if anything, Makaton will speed up your toddlers ability to speak.

When you sign with your baby or toddler you should always make sure you say the word you are signing, so your child associates this word and sign with an object.

Improve your toddlers speech to help
improve your toddlers behaviour.

When your toddler starts showing signs of speech, encourage them to attempt the word they are signing to you. At first, their attempt may be not much more than a grunt, but you should remember that your toddler is trying and developing facial muscles and understanding their vocal ability, which is a very important part of speech development.

How to teach your child Makaton

Makaton can be taught to babies as young as a few months old.

The best way to start your baby signing is to choose one sign, for example milk. Before you give your baby their bottle sign milk and say the word "milk" to them, then take their hand and get them to make the sign, then give them their milk.

Repitition of this will eventually lead to your baby signing that they want milk when they are hungry.

Build your toddlers confidence and help to reduce
toddler anxiety.

Generally the younger the child is, the longer it will take for them to associate the sign with the object, but the younger you start the less frustration your baby will feel and the easier it will be for them to pick up more signs as they grow up.

When you teach your toddler Makaton, remember:

  • Only teach one sign at a time to avoid confussion
  • Be patient
  • Keep at it, it will be worth it in the end.