Monday, April 15, 2013

Baby M: Language Update 1.5 years

Baby M is turning one and a half in three days.

He can say a few proper words, mainly bye-bye/papa (hard to tell which he's saying), baba (grandma), mama, possible attempts at ball and his sister's name. He is not prolific in the word use at the moment.

If you count animal sounds and signs, though, then his word count goes way up. He loves pointing out to us all the animals he sees, making sure to tell us MOO or BAA or CLUCK CLUCK. I'd say he knows ten or more types of animals, with a mixture of sounds and signs - for a dog he says HAF HAF, for a butterfly he signs 'butterfly', etc. - and he is very eager to learn more. He is always bringing me a book of animals to look through together. I am becoming hard pressed to come up with unique sounds or gestures that he can make for each one. :)

He watched part of Disney's Cars recently with K, and he kept tapping me on the shoulder and making his sound and sign for car. He didn't let up until I agreed that yes, those are cars. Then again a few seconds later, and again, and again, for at least twenty minutes.

We are pleased that his comprehension in both languages is good. He is able to point at things or pictures that we name, follow instructions (when it pleases him, obviously), and so on. Now if we could just get him to stop throwing toys at us...

Seriously, he is an unstoppable force when he gets in a throwing mood. His favorite position is toy in hand, with his hand cocked behind his head so that you never - quite - know when he is going to pull the trigger and throw it at you. One morning the Slovak came into the living room to find K innocently absorbed in play and M standing right behind her, big toy truck held up over his head, huge devilish grin on his face. Apo got there in the nick of time.

K puts up with it really well, and I can't even say I blame her (as an older sister myself) for occasionally losing it and beating him over the head. As a mother, though, I have to discourage that sort of behavior.

M loves books and has a great attention span for his age. His latest craze, as mentioned above, is looking through animal books - big children's encyclopedias with lots of pictures. If someone says an animal he recognizes (even in passing), he will sometimes go retrieve the book and find the picture of that animal to show.

He also loves rhymes and finger plays and if you do one, then he wants you to do them all. He will hold out one foot for This Little Piggy, then the other foot, then point to his belly for Round and Round the Garden, then hold out his hand for Varila myšička kašičku, then the other hand, then grab your hands to make you sing Row Row Row Your Boat, on down the list of all his body parts with songs or rhymes attached to them. It's really not acceptable to do one and then quit.

M is at a trying age right now, with lots of thoughts and not enough words to express them. He is on the path now, though, and we know he won't be a toddler forever.

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