ASL and Activity Songs for Children – A powerful way to learn.

In my 30’s I decided to begin performing children’s music concerts for family audiences. Georgia and I performed with our friends Terry Tiritilli and Clare Carnegie in a children’s band called K.C. & Company.  A couple of things happened at that time that influenced the direction of children’s music for us.

First, we had a friend that worked with the deaf who came to one of our shows.  She said, “I wish there was something that deaf and hearing children could do together.”  Georgia had worked at the School for the Deaf in Riverside, CA and had signed for years with our own children.  Then over 30 years ago, we began to add a few ASL songs and instruction into our shows.

The second influential thing happened because we added ASL to a children’s song called One Little Bird, by Bob Harrison, a friend of ours. It is a fun number song featured on our We Sign Numbers DVD.  Bob and I were the only ones performing this song and Georgia and I were the only ones using ASL with this song.  We did many shows with that song one summer.  The following summer we went back to do shows at some of the previous year’s venues and kids were coming up to us and still signing the One Little Bird song.

Wow! We were surprised and so began our research into the power of children’s music, ASL songs, and movement to support learning for children.  There are so many benefits children receive from activity songs and ASL songs.  Children’s activity songs help children to learn and remember words, vocabulary as well as concepts, while engaging fine and gross motor skills.  They learn by moving, seeing, saying, hearing, and more all at the same time in activity songs.  This resulted in our 1st DVD featuring ASL and The ABC Song. Our original ASL and Song series was called Say, Sing and Sign.  It would later change into the award winning We Sign series.