Teaching toddlers how to talk with their hands

Teaching toddlers how to talk with their hands
By: Arnold Wyrick

When it comes to teaching kids their ABC's, one Southern Illinois daycare is taking things one step farther.  The New Hope Church in Marion, Illinois opened it's doors to 30 eager kids ready to learn new things, on Tuesday.
The faith based daycare is the first of it's kind in Marion.
"We want to teach them about faith at this young age, in hopes that they will continue practicing their faith throughout their lives," says Reverend Cindy Absher.
To look inside the classrooms at the daycare one might not notice anything different.  But if you look a little closer you'll see that some of the kids are asking for more food, and saying thank you without speaking a word.
"By teaching them signing it offers a lot of opportunity to equate additional knowledge, and expanding their abilities.  Just like teaching an older student a foreign language.  There are also many people even in our community that are deaf.  So it gives them opportunity for another type of communication," Reverend Absher said.
It's surprising to see how quickly the toddlers pick up the motions to speak with their hands.  And even the infants are taught the basic words during their school days.
The future holds much hope, and faith for the church, and it's students.
"Eventually we'd like to expand our curriculum to encompass kindergartners, first graders,a and so on.  But for now we'll just be thankful for the 30 kids we have and take things one step at a time from here," Reverend Absher said.