Wednesday, May 4, 2011

My Daughter Has a Problem

My wife and I have worked tirelessly to expand our daughter's vocabulary.  We read about 5-10 books a day, and do a lot of response soliciting in order to teach her new words and sounds.  Heck, we even throw in some baby Spanish so she'll be well rounded.  At this point, I have noticed a problem that I could use some help with.

My daughter will not say LION, MONKEY, or ELEPHANT.  She says dog, duck, cat, sheep, cow, snake, and can make all of the corresponding animal sounds for these creatures.  However, when it comes to these three, she will only make the sounds.  When a picture of a lion comes up, she will "roar" instead of saying "lion."  When we see a monkey on TV or in a book, she will say "oo oo ah ah" but not "monkey."  When we walk past the sculpture of elephants that my wife brought home from Thailand, she makes the elephant noise, but does not say elephant.  I don't know why she does it.  Maybe it's because it's just more fun that way.

Come to think of it, it would be a lot more honest, and a lot more fun, just to point at people and make sounds that identify their defining features.  For instance, instead of just looking at someone and thinking he's really tall, just yell, "NBA!" and keep walking. Or perhaps, if there were an unusually rotund individual, (me for example!) you could make the sound of a truck backing up.  Or if someone smells really bad, you can just point and yell "SMELL!" to let them know.  If someone is lacking in the hair department (me again!) you could just yell "SOLAR PANEL!"  If a woman was wearing an orange flower print top with purple plaid bottoms, you could just yell "HIDEOUSLY MISMATCHED!" and be done with it - everyone would know.  If a 50-something gentleman was getting into his new sportscar, you could just yell "MID-LIFE CRISIS!" This would be a lot more fun... I'm having fun just picturing it!  I do suppose it could get you into a lot of fights though.  Should you decide to adopt this way of life, you should add karate lessons to your routine.

Anyway, back to my daughter's issue.  I'm just going to assume that, with enough repetition, she will outgrow the problem and eventually say the actual words instead of  just making sounds.  But for now, whenever she does it, you know I'm going to be thinking that it would be awesome to be refreshingly honest with everyone.


  1. I can help you with your problem. First of all, only first time parents would call this a "problem". The fact that your daughter is only one (the same age as my youngest) and can say all of those other words is GREAT! Not many kids do that! Also, a child of this age typically only says one syllable words- the words that you are trying to get her to say are all 2-3 syllables.Unrealistic expectations, my friend. So relax and be happy that she can do all that she can. You are doing great!!

  2. I was going to say the same comment about syllables... everything else (other than oo oo ahh ahh) is one syllable... and even that is four one syllable words.

  3. like i said, i want her to overachieve.



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