Top positive review
124 of 128 people found this helpful
on December 18, 2003
I'd like to correct the reviewer who said that the Signing Time videos don't teach the words "please" or "thank-you". I own all three DVDs in the set, and I know those words are taught. Volume 2, "Playtime Signs", teaches both of those words. It even includes a song about them, called, "Magic Words". Currently, the desciption of the Volume 2 DVD on Amazon.com lists the wrong words, so don't trust it. For accurate information about the videos, visit the Signing Time website at [...] You can also see video clips there.
A strong point of the Signing Time videos is the fact that each word is demonstrated by several different people. This is important, because everyone signs a little differently. Other videos, which generally use only one demonstrator, have left me wondering how exact I have to be in imitating the sign in order to have it recognized as the intended sign.
This video is the first one in the series, and was made a year or two before the latter two videos. The producers appear to have learned a lot from making the first video, and the latter two are even better (they've added songs, present words in groups, have better filming, and moved the "Introduction" by Rachel into it's own segment, so you don't have to watch it every time you play the main feature). The latter two videos also include more words - about 30 each, instead of just 18, as in this video.
One thing that has disappointed me about the Signing Time videos is that they leave out a lot of important words that are commonly used with babies & toddlers (which is why I only rate it with 4 stars). I would rather learn "diaper" and "bottle" than "fish" and "bird". Happily, I discovered the "Baby See 'N Sign" videos, which do a great job of filling this gap. I would recommend "Baby See 'N Sign" to all serious baby-signers, in addition to the Signing Time series. The second "Baby See 'N Sign" video was made specifically from words that were requested by parents. The "See 'N Sign" videos aren't as cute as the "Signing Time" videos, but they are well-done, and they still hold my baby's attention. They also cover A LOT more words (60+ on the first video, and 100+ on the second). They're only available on VHS, which was a slight disappointment for me, but they are well worth having. Currently, Amazon.com only sells the first video, but you can order the second one from [...]
I certainly hope the Signing Time people keep making more videos. It would be great if they would teach simple phrases, like "come here" and "I'll be right back", instead of just single words. I would also like to see more video snippets of children using signs as they play together, or interact with their parents, instead of just seeing children doing a single sign by themself. I also think they should show the object being signed in the same picture with the person who is doing the sign, instead of showing the sign, then the object, then the sign - each in separate clips. (To be fair, there are a few examples of someone doing a sign with the object present - but most of the time, that is not the case - and in some of the cases, they show a cartoon of the object instead of a real object, which I think isn't as effective.)
Overall, the Signing Time videos are well worth having, since the manner of presentation is very engaging, and they do an excellent job of holding a baby's attention.