This monthís Featured Instructor is Allison Bouffard!
When did you decide you wanted to teach baby sign language?
Right after my son was born I was searching the internet and came across some articles about baby sign language. I saw how many benefits there are for both the babies and parents. I was floored! I had never really thought that hearing babies could learn sign language or needed to. I had just started my year leave from teaching first grade and thought this would be a great thing to learn and to hopefully provide some additional income for the family
When and how did you get started teaching baby sign language?
I took the Kindersigns course and got certified in the fall. I began teaching a friend’s baby and then my own son when he turned 6 months old. It was right after the New Year (2008) that I began teaching. I approached the different moms’ clubs and breastfeeding resource group that I belonged to and the Stroller Strides exercise class patrons that I knew. From there I went to libraries and Babies R Us stores-anywhere that I could think of that had baby clientele to spread the word about baby signing. I am doing workshops and seminars mostly out of my home and occasionally at someone else’s home or location.
What is the most important thing/lesson you have learned working with children?
Each child/baby is unique and learns differently. They learn at their own pace and in their own way. It is important to remember that there are different learning modalities for how one learns best (i.e. visual, auditory or kinesthetic learners). You need to play on their strengths, be patient, have fun and be positive!
What are your inspirations?
My son’s beautiful smile (thus my business name TOO CUTE FOR WORDS) and my husband’s never-ending encouragement, motivation and support!
I love seeing the look of success on children’s faces when they try and when they know they’ve succeeded!
Any news that you would like to share with us?
I presented FREE intro. Seminars at several Babies R Us stores in CT during the months of Mar.-May. I am going to teach a three session workshop at a Trumbull, CT library this summer. This fall I will teach a Baby Signing 101 workshop for a continuing education class in Fairfield, CT as well as one in Stratford, CT.
I often run specials and offer discounts to entice participants to attend and to bring their friends!
A bit about Allison:
I am a lower Fairfield County, CT elementary school teacher with 11 years+ experience. I have a B.A. in Elementary/Special Education and Psychology from Providence College. I have a M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction from Fairfield University. I am on maternity leave this year. I live with my husband and baby boy. I began to research baby sign language as I watched my son grow but was too young to communicate with us. I was intrigued by the benefits of baby signing with hearing babies and couldn't wait to become certified in order to spread this knowledge of American Sign Language (ASL) with other parents who want to be less frustrated, give their child a gift of communication and have a greater bond with their child/children.
From everyone at Kindersigns.com, we wish you the greatest success with your Baby Sign Language Business, Allsion!
If you would like to be our next Featured Instructor send me an email to email@example.com with Featured Instructor in the subject line. Our Featured Instructors will be presented in the monthly Kindersigns newsletter and on www.kinderworkshops.com for one month!