(sign) language explosion

We took our bear to the L.A. zoo this weekend to gawk at animals.

Boring: alligators, flamingos, lions.

Interesting: goats, giraffes, gorillas.

He got to pet the goats, which was fun. I am periodically a tiny bit sad that we don’t have any animals for him to hang out with (or poke and prod and boss around.)

Being at the zoo gave H. an opportunity to practice his language skills, since most of the labels he knows are for animals. We’ve seen a real explosion of his interest in words (of the sign language variety) over the past month: he’s gone from a small handful to knowing the signs for:

*cat
*dog
*pig
*fish
*bird
*flower
*baby
*hat
*drink
*eat
*more
*all done

(I may be missing a few here. And as of yesterday, he’s working hard on acquiring “horse”.)

He’s also interested in snapping his fingers, signing “rain” (guess what kind of weather we’ve been having) and some kind of self-invented sign where he slaps his forearm. I think it may be his word for “dance”: he’s a big dance fan right now. If any kind of music plays, he’ll bounce rhythmically and tap his toddler feet.

He will also find for you, on both his own body and yours:

*ear
*nose
*hair
*foot
*belly

It’s all very sweet. Toddlers are a lot of fun.

Also – the sign language acquisition has pretty much alleviated my mild concern about WHY ISN’T THIS KID TALKING YET? It seems to this ignorant layperson that the ability to acquire language is the key thing, not so much the “what type” or “how fast” or even “Whyyyyy does he refuse to say “mama”, WHYYYYY, where is my reward?!?” parts.

Finally, I am sad to report that our bear has a fever right now – he woke up fine, went down for his nap fine, but woke up with a raging fever and a bad case of staring-into-the-middle-distance. The nurse at his pediatrician’s office responded with polite, patient dismissiveness.

“I hear you. But that’s what happens to little ones. They get mystery fevers.”

He felt better, after some ibuprofen, at least well enough to sit still and eat dinner and then watch a bit of a documentary about the circus. (He looked at the horses seriously, and tentatively signed “Dog?”)

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One response to “(sign) language explosion

  1. Gram(insert mental pic of sign)

    poor bear.
    Funny he did look a little glazy yesterday,
    in hindsight.

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