Here is my very first post, and I’m already foregoing any real information or insight in order to boast about my boy. I left him strapped in his stroller at the bottom of the stairs while I ran up to fetch some last minute item. Returning, I find that he’s picked up the “notice of filming” flyer left on the steps and is loudly and enthusiastically pretending to read from it. When I ask if he’s reading, he gives me a huge grin and then drags his finger under the words while babbling all the more eagerly. My boy is not quite 18 months old and it is only in the past 3 or 4 months that he’s really started to enjoy being read to. So I am blown away by both the pretending in itself and the attention to the printed word. (There was only solid text on this paper.) And, really, it was just unbelievably cute.
I did some very preliminary research (ie. Google search) to find out if there is some expected time-line for this kind of behaviour. All I found, though, was that pretending to read normally happens by age 3. And, elsewhere, that pretending to read is a sign of reading readiness in school age children. (Obviously, we are not pretending in quite the same way!)
I do know that it’s so easy for us proud parents to latch on to all kinds of things as signs of advanced skills. (And there’s nothing wrong with that. I know my boy is bright, even if he’s not quite as sophisticated as I sometimes imagine.) By most accounts, though, most kids are caught up with one another by 3 or so and there’s really no clear advantage to early talking. At my boy’s age, too, I need to remember that while I know how much he talks, he’s often quiet around others. And their kids are quiet around me.
Despite the variations, the rate at which all kids learn language comprehension and verbal communication in the 2nd year just floors me. It also means that I’m going to have to watch what I say!