Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Alphabet Kid emerges

It has been said that young children have a prodigious memory, learning at a rate that will never again be equalled in their lives. Everything from language, social rules and power structures to basic math and motor skills gets assimilated at warp speed.

Which may all be true, though as far as we can tell Sonny - who's punched through to almost 15 months with us - is devoting much of his memory power to the alphabet. To be exact, the alphabet chart that Mum drew up eons ago and then hung on the wall. The little fella's devotion to the letters is remarkable: At least once a day, he will demand to be lifted up to it and to chant through from A to K (beyond which point things still get hazy) as he chirrups his mangled responses to "[Fill in letter] is for...?]" Thus, he knows that 'A' is for 'air-pull' (apple), 'B' is for 'bole' (ball) and is for 'cap' (cap). Admittedly, it isn't really clear if he's just guessing ('D', which is supposed to elicit the response of 'Desk', perpetually draws forth 'Dett') and the pronunciation is often comical: 'I' is, apparently, for 'I-kim' (ice cream).

The strongest proof of Sonny's alphabet-mania is the way it can be exploited to disrupt one of his sobbing fits. If he's noisily protesting the snatching-away of some toy, recitation of the alphabet-object pairings will result in a remarkable suspension of bawling - at least long enough for him to wheeze out 'air-pull', before teary service is resumed. At times, the trick whisks away the crying jag altogether - and Sonny will toddle over to the chart and begin to agitate for a run-through.

It is obviously far too early for us to conclude that the little fella will be particularly attached to words and their meanings (even though both his parents are writers of a sort). It could be he simply enjoys the singsong nature of the alphabet 'game', as he may conceive of it: All the serious pedagogical activity that we attempt to interest young children in is probably seen in their eyes simply as 'fun'. Or, in some cases, 'not fun' - at which point the child will brutally end his engagement and scamper off in search of something else to do.

In the present case, we're hoping Sonny will retain his interest until he's gone from 'L' to 'Z'. Maybe after that, we could work a bit on his pronunciation...

7 Comments:

Iris Robin said...

I think it's wonderful you have created a game out of learning the alphabet. Your kid seems to really enjoy it, and sounds adorable doing so. You guys are on the right track to having a young Einstein on your hands!

Shirley said...

Your sonny is waaaay advanced! My girl can only look at stuff and calls everything "ba" including bus, car, lorries, ball, kites, ballon.... She's real good at following instructions thou, but I'm not entirely sure what use is that.... Hee hee!

謝明博馬陰人放購ˇ屁ㄉ人不董識貨ㄉ人精打細算ㄉ人霖宏百里緒恩駛溟含凾信攔醬油邱科信彰柏宏與簽纏t06單耳耽溺娟謝政道QKPb戲曲學院部大汐布袋戲model mode台北不婚獨子女 臺獨 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Parenting children said...

that is great to hear - we have to do everything to encourage our children.

My son spends alot of time now telling me all the words he can spell [ sometimes it's a bit much ] but as long as it helps him and encourages him to learn... I'll lesson :)

karipuf said...

No updates for a while?

Cloudsters said...

Hi folks: We'll put this note up as a brief post by-and-by, but the blog is on hiatus pending (we hope) certain improvements.

With any luck, we'll get underway in the not too distant future.

Imagination said...

Wow, I really love what you’re doing at your blog. Keep up the great work!
A favorite website and children’s author that I’d like to share http://DannyTheDragon.com the book is a nomine for Best Children’s Picture Book of 2009! I think you may like to visit the author as well http://TinaTurbin.com