An experienced teacher is helping babies and very young children in Huddersfield to communicate before they can talk.

Angela Joseph specialised in teaching deaf children for almost 20 years but left the profession to set up her own Sing and Sign programme in Huddersfield a year ago.

It’s for all children and also parents, grandparents, childminders – anyone who brings their babies and young children along to the sessions.

Angela said: “I set up Sing and Sign Huddersfield as it’s early communication for little ones before they can talk.

“It helps them to begin to understand more about the world around them and gives them opportunities to communicate their wants and needs before the natural development of speech.”

The sign language the children learn is called Baby Sign key word signing and Angela holds classes during term time in Huddersfield, Holmfirth, Slaithwaite, Longwood, Lindley and Stainland. Places for the Summer term are filling up fast.

Angela explained: “I believe very much in communication for all and know how using signs and gestures can aid communication and understanding while also developing and enhancing language and vocabulary.

“Sing and Sign is not your average baby group as this is not just for the baby, it’s also for parents and family members who are learning alongside their little one.”

Sing and Sign was developed with the help of speech and language experts and was launched in January 2001.

Since then its programme has taught many tens of thousands of parents across the UK how to sign with their babies and encourage amazing early communication.

There are three stages to Sing and Sign – birth to six months, five months to 14 months and 13 months to 30 months – but they are flexible.

Angela does the first two stages which are both 10-week courses where the signs are built up each week.

From this September Angela will add a five-week Babes programme which focuses on other aspects of bonding such as connection, eye contact, music and anticipation. That will take the age range from birth to two-and-a-half years.

Angela added: “I have loved it so much. It’s great to get to meet so many wonderful families, share this part of their little one’s life with them and provide a space for parents to support one another and make friends.

“We have great fun and they love it just as much as I do to see early communication developing.

“It’s fantastic and amazing seeing early communication develop – six-month-olds can sign ‘more milk’, eight-month-olds can sign when they want to eat, nine-month-olds can ask where something is and 12-month-olds can sign ‘ouch’ when they are hurt or teething.”

Angela also provides classes at home with the entire programme streamed at whatever time families want to watch it.

People who sign up for the course can also watch it online so they can practice at home and encourage other family members to learn too.

For more information go to the @singandsignhuddersfield on Instagram and Facebook or to see video clips of little one communicating before they have developed clear speech.

The website is

Written by ANDY HIRST who runs his own Yorkshire freelance journalism agency AH! PR ( specialising in press releases, blogging, website content and copywriting.


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