Communicating with your non English speaking child can be frustrating. We used a list of handy phrases in Amharic. See list here.
We also used home made picture cards to show the action or need. We included: drink, eat, potty, sleep, dress, play, sick, happy, sad, hug, etc..... we did not use them as much as we used the Amharic phrases. First we used them together, but as we learned the phrases better we did not need the cards. We wrote the Amharic phrase on the cards so that we could say it. Some families have found the cards to be really helpful. You can make them yourself with clip art or you can buy some or download them on this site.
I would mention that so called universal signs and signals still need to be learned and so some cards will not be self apparent. Some will, a picture of a child drinking is self apparent. But, a picture of a toilet may not be right away. Huh???? Well, most places the toilet is a pit in the ground. :) Does not look like our toilet. So, some orientation will be needed but happens quickly. Do try to add the Amharic or Sidamic phrases so your child understands.
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