Friday, December 3, 2010

Block Towers of Fun

And now I present, for your viewing pleasure, videos of Nick building with blocks. There are also some nice snippets of conversation. It's interesting how parents each have their own special thing that they play with their kid. Greg likes to look through art books (the big coffee table ones) with Nick and look at the pictures. He also does wrestling and they play basketball together with Nick's little hoop.

Me? I read tons of stories with Nick, both fiction and nonfiction. He likes the stories I've read over and over. He likes to say "I read it," and then he tells me the story by pointing to the pictures. But something I do with Nick just about every day is building with blocks. He has a decent attention span for it--the day I took these two videos, Nick and I built towers and such for at least 40 minutes. He loves knocking them down, but I also have noticed that he gets excited when he's able to add blocks to the towers.

If you haven't figured it out, "No Say You" means play with me, or come here. I'm not sure what that actually stands for, but he says it constantly. I need to take more videos of Nick, if for no other reason than to track his linguistic development. As an ELL teacher, I've had lots of training in linguistics and in how people learn language. I am constantly reading books about the evolution of languages and how people learn them, whether they're first or second languages. Every day I work with kids learning English as a second or even a third or fourth language. But it's amazing to me how quickly little ones learn their first language.

Nick has gone, in about eight months, from having only two or three words to speaking in short sentences. If you had to ask me how many words he knows, I wouldn't even know where to start. I would guess it's into the thousands. He already knows how to add 's to show ownership. (I'm still working on this one with my 5th grade ELL students who've spoken English since 1st grade! There's a big difference between learning a first and a second language.) Nick already mostly gets the concepts of over/under, up/down, in/out, etc. Every couple of days he blows me away with something he says.

I'm not saying Nick is advanced for his age. I think he's about where he should be, with speaking. I just love watching the process unfold each day. Today, for example, Nick was looking at the Christmas tree, and he saw this snowman ornament, pointed to it, and said "See snowman over there, by moon? It's breakable. No touch." Now, this ornament was right next to a moon ornament, and I had been talking to him the other day about not touching that one because it was breakable. I may or not have used the word breakable a bunch of times. Anyway, I was astounded that he remembered.

1 comment:

  1. I like how one block falls over and he's like, Fine! Be that way! I'll just knock the rest of you over too! I loved listening to Ben talk at that age. You spend so much time wanting them to talk, and then they get older and you just wish they'd be quiet for a little while.