Elias presents ... a worm!    Thoughts on family, philosophy,
and technology


Monday, February 13, 2006

Clay spoon!

Elias is 1-1/2-years-old now, and wow has he grown up a lot since being a 1-year-old. His vocabulary must be a few hundred words now, and he learns a few more each day. Quite voracious, really. Often he'll hear a word one day, try it out, and then wake up the next day saying that new word just for fun ("coffee bean!" is the example that comes to mind). His special interest continues to be lights, so of course he knows vocabulary of lights well: light bulb, wire, cable, switch, button, lamp, turn on, turn off, broken, shade, globe, receptacle ("tickle"), plug, etc. I also realized last week that he seems to recognize most if not all of the alphabet, because he has sponge letters at bathtime and can tell me what each one is if I ask.

Elias's learning of numbers has been educational for me. I never would have realized or at least appreciated that ordinality is the foundation for cardinality. Elias has been able to count to 10, with help, for several weeks; this amounts to repeating the list of numbers, not knowing what they mean. It has been much more difficult to understand numbers as answers to "how many?" I think he is just on the edge of understanding that "two" means there are two of the same thing. Sometimes I'll show a picture of something like three bears, and ask him "how many bears are there?", and he might say "two" or he might say "three" or he might count "one, two", and that's it. So he knows that counting numbers have something to do with "how many", but he doesn't quite yet get the notion of "how many?", or maybe just *which* quantity each number means.

Elias has never had a full-on attachment item (like a blankie), but one thing comes close: his "clay spoon". This is a plastic measuring spoon which he once, several weeks ago, squished some blue hardening clay into. The clay seems permanently stuck in it now, and he loves that spoon, to the paint that lately he calls out for it when it's time to sleep. Unfortunately the clay spoon keeps getting misplaced, but so far it has always returned, too. What I think is really cool about the clay spoon is that Elias's favorite toy is something that *he* made!

Finally, he's doing the typical 1-1/2-year-old thing of lifting heavy objects for fun. There's quite a bit of grunting involved, but that may be partly because he's seen me make a big, silly production out of lifting big things as part of the moving-in-and-rearranging process.

In the picture, Elias is doing the small slide at the part on his own: climbing up, sliding down (on his belly), then running around to do it again.


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