He likes blocks – Duplo and wooden – although he doesn’t seem to love them like he some children do. Throwing them, yes. Building with them, only sometimes. But the building blocks of language? He’s totally in love with those.
We heard a lot of this last November or so. Trying out what may have been his earliest sentence, he exuded confidence, determination, and a strong independent streak. Of course, what child doesn’t want to do things himself? Sure, he wanted to feed himself soup, which sure as soup wouldn’t stay on the spoon. Sure, he wanted to run the bath himself, or climb into the tub alone, or put on his own shoes. Sure, he wanted to get into his car seat himself – never mind that he was as likely to just get in and sit down as he was to drive the car. (Now, he says “Own!” when he wants to do something on his own, like stand on the four-wheeled toy to pull the string of the lamp, for example…)
His vocabulary, which has seemed (to us, as the glowing, proud parents) quite large, continued to grow, and so did his repertoire of sentences.
To help soothe him to sleep while he nursed I’d often murmur repetitive sentences: “Boy goes night-night. Girl goes night-night. Daddy goes night-night. Mama goes night-night. Maria goes night-night. Pepper goes night-night. K-K goes night-night. Autumn goes night-night….Everybody goes night-night.”
This applied to other bodily functions, too: peeing, pooping, burping – lots of things were listed. (There’s a lot that we all do!)
And he began repeating them.
Sometimes, Daddy would drive him around to get him to sleep, and he’d chatter himself to sleep. “Daddy goes night-night. Mama goes night-night. Nannie goes night-night. Pepper goes night-night….Eveh-body goes night-night.”
He’s still a lister. The other day, he did one of his own creation after seeing a small, round, candy-coated chocolate. “M & M! Mama have M & M. Nannie have M & M. Daddy have M & M. Autumn have M & M….”
He’s built on his foundation.
For Christmas, they got a Duplo block base and an animal set – and brother and sister alike have been engrossed by this new way to create, the possibilities before them.
With language, too, the possibilities stretch before him (and her, of course!). What can we say to this, the march of language that pulls a small boy from babyhood to childhood?