North Andover Trio 'Shows Their Signs'

The twins on set of Signing Time
The twins on set of Signing Time
For a dozen years already, Rachel Coleman, her daughter Leah and nephew, Alex, have entertained and educated infants, toddlers and their parents through their uniquely designed American Sign Language Series, Signing Time (www.signingtime.com).  The Emmy-Award nominated and Parent's Choice Award-winning series features co-founder Rachel Coleman, who literally turned unexpected adversity into opportunity.  The Colemans first daughter, Leah, was born deaf, and the couple soon realized that Leah was picking up signs faster than they could teach. Rachel, a singer/songwriter herself, along with her sister Emilie, together teamed up to create a captivating, entertaining video to teach sign language to children. And the Coleman family's Signing Time story began.  

More than 6 years ago, Signing Time held a countrywide casting call for infant signers. North Andover's Abigail Agudelo was one of the young stars hand selected to appear in the Baby Signing Time series. Signing Time had given a voice to Abigail who has Down syndrome, well before she could speak. And her fondness of the series was obvious--as was her keen ability to reproduce signs and communicate, although she is not deaf and can speak, using only her hands.  "I love Rachel Coleman," she would say, and even at her most recent meeting with her idol, the same words were spoken over and over again. 

Earlier this month, the Agudelo Family again traveled to Salt Lake City, home of Two Little Hands Productions (parent company of Signing Time), where not only Abigail, but her younger fraternal twin brothers Aramis and Alec, were filmed for a special holiday-focused Signing Time DVD.  

"All our children have been long time fans of Signing Time, and we leveraged the series early on so that our children had a means to communicating before they actually had speech," said Tony Agudelo. "We have definitely found that use of sign language helped our children to read better and earlier than expected milestones, and they now have another language to use.  We're huge fans." 

The Signing Time Christmas DVD is expected for release later this year. Until then, both Baby Signing Time and Signing Time DVDs and a variety of useful tools and CDs can be purchased directly from Two Little Hands Productions at www.signingtime.com.   

(September 2008 - Meet the Signers) This video/link will go to one of the many Rachel Coleman written songs titled "Show me a Sign"


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