Friday, May 10

Baby Signing, Baby-Led Weaning and other adventures with a 6 month old...

There is so much going on developmentally at 6 months it's sometimes hard to keep up.
Physically, Zac is sitting up on his own now, desperately attempting to crawl, and doing 360's in his crib at night. 
He's one active little guy!

^^this is Zac (on our video monitor) "falling asleep" in his crib... he's done a complete 360 here and managed to get all mixed up in his thankfully very breathable muslin sheets^^

He's also making leaps and bounds in other areas of development, so I am researching new ways to stimulate and challenge him. And two new things we are dabbling with lately are baby signing and baby-led weaning.

First off baby signing....

Communication-wise, Zac really does seem to understand so much more now. He tries to "talk" to us with his strange sounds and facial expressions, but I know it must be frustrating for him. 
Anyway my aunt gave us her copy of a baby sign language book and I have decided to give it a go. I don't know in what depth I'll get into it, but I've decided to introduce a few key signs (milk, eat, more, all done, mom and dad) that I think will help him communicate his needs to us. I'll let you know how it goes! Did any of you out there with children attempt baby-signing?
(ps: this website is all you really need to learn the basics)

Next, since Zac is ready for solid food we are dabbling into baby-led weaning (BLW). 

I like some of this concept... which is essentially letting your baby learn to feed himself solids (no pureeing or spoon-feeding).... you just give them a fruit, vegetable sticks, or even a chunk of meat and let them go at it! My first thought was, no way, he'll choke! but as long as you're careful with which finger foods you give them, it's amazing what they can eat. I don't intend to do this exclusively, which perhaps defeats the whole philosophy (but I'm a person of moderation...that's just me. And besides, I thoroughly enjoy spoon-feeding my little guy). My plan is to implement some of these ideas: I like encouraging Zac's independence, I like that it helps improve his manual dexterity, and I like the idea of the entire family eating the same thing at meals. 

So this morning I gave Zac a whole banana... and we watched. To our surprise he brought it up to his mouth and started sucking on it/mashing it with his gums. It eventually got too slimy & slippery and to pick up, but he ate a good chunk of it. At one point a large piece broke off in his mouth and he just spit it out- simple as that. No choking at all. So I'm intrigued. Tomorrow I'll give him some cucumber : )

What do you think of all these baby "trends" (because really, that's what they are)? Would you try baby-signing or BLW?

ps: Have you seen this video? Babies tasting lemons for the very first time. Hilarious! My husband is begging that we try this on Zac. 


k said...

i am loosely teaching sign language, but haven't really gotten in to it yet! i did teach him to high five though which is seriously cute, haha! i'm still to nervous to try baby led weaning, but...really need to start giving him foods i guess.

Lady Grey said...

That's so funny, Krystal, because I learned about BLW from you, actually. I had never even heard of it before I read about it on your blog. I love that Wesley can high-5. I gotta get on that : )

Tanie said...

We're doing BLW with Gwen- after 7 years of doing family child care and spoon-feeding other people's babies I am BURNT OUT haha. So far we've given her watermelon, pears and bread. She's not very good at getting food into her mouth so more often than not I've had to help her, but she can bite off pieces, chew them, move them around her mouth and then spit them out. I don't think she's swallowed anything yet but I'm sure it'll happen eventually.

Lady Grey said...

Tanie, I'd be pretty sick of spoon feeding babies too if I did what you did : )

We also tried cucumber with Zac but it was so slippery, he had a hard time gripping it! I guess it's all part of the learning process.

Anonymous said...

We did a little bit of BLW, mainly because I felt I could pretty much overcook/soften certain foods for my son to eat that he wouldn't choke on. They also sell these mesh-kind of stick/food holders that you can put food in and the baby can suck on it and get a little bit out at a time so you don't have the same kind of choking problems. As for sign language, the biggest one we taught our son was "more" and he definitely learned it quickly and used it often! It came in handy for sure!

maria said...

this sounds pretty interesting! Keen to hear how you go with it.x

abigail said...

my son is 9 months, we've been baby led weaning since he was 6 months old and I love it. We occasionally give him oatmeal on a spoon, but that's pretty much it. He's gagged about twice, but spoon fed babies do that too.

And he eats everything! He'll sit there gnawing on an asparagus spear for 10 minutes if he's in the mood and couldn't get enough of the parsnips I gave him the other day. Going out to eat is actually fun. He eats off the (adult menu) and has a good time.

Only drawback is that it's really messy and the dogs got fat. Oh well...