Our toddler decided to start talking at approximately two years and four months. It was quite a shock. We were worried about his limited vocabulary of ‘frog’ and ‘Dadda’ (not interchangeable) when we took a little trip to the country and one morning, out of literally nowhere he counted to ten! I’d like to take credit for this – but I had only really counted to three with him before (“I’m going to count to three and you better have taken your brioche out of the DVD player”) alas, I think Cbeebies has been his tutor.
And it didn’t stop there – over the week he continued counting, continually, all day, every day (it’s amazing how quickly you can go from feeling pure pride to severe tedium). We also realised he could name the numbers one to ten if he saw them – and they didn’t have to be in the correct order. Next he was shouting ‘Mr Tumble’ and naming all the animals in his ‘Monkey puzzle’ book. He also started repeating any words you said to him. It was quite the transformation. His words became clearer and the more praise he got (mostly from Grandma – who now insists he is Shakespeare the second) the more vocal he became. We were massively relieved!
Grandma decided we must grasp this new found learning with vigour and ordered about six boxes of flash cards from Amazon to try and expand his vocabulary from twenty words to, I assume, 2000 over the next week! Frog was, and still is, his absolute favourite word – he says it several times a day – though he pronounces it ‘Froarr’, all was going well – and then we stumbled across a minor pronunciation problem.
Grandma bought him a truck.
‘Truck!” I said, “it’s a truck!” I repeated.
He looked at me intrigued and thought a moment before replying loudly “Cock”.
“Er…. no, dear… T..R…uck. TR… uck… Truck.”
“Cock!” he shouted.
Ah, oh dear.
Our bins are collected on a Friday – and of course our son loves standing on the door step and watching the huge rubbish truck. The bin men are usually very sweet and wave at him – I fear their relationship is on thin ice now as he has started screaming “Cock, cock, cock” at them.
Then later, on one of his flash cards, a clock.
“Clock! I said, it’s a clock C…L…ock, CL … ock, CLOCK.”
“Cock!” he replied – excitedly.
A week later when the grandparents took him out for lunch they were a little startled when he pointed at my dad’s watch and exclaimed “Grandpa’s cock!”
ah, now this is awkward.
Then he had a go at some clothing. His favourite, of course, are his socks. But he hasn’t got the hang of the ‘S’ sound yet – you can imagine my horror when I was carefully putting on his socks in the morning and he started shouting at the top of his lungs
“Fock! Fock Focks Fock!”
We are just going to have to stay in. I can’t be on the bus with this miniature Father Jack bellowing out “Fock!” every two minutes. What will people think?
Last week we brought home his new baby brother. He looked at him in his moses basket, thought for a while and then said
“Frog?” Well, yes, I can see where he’s got that idea.
Of course the worse case scenario is that she gets out a bag containing a truck, some socks and a clock and asks him to name them.
I know his pronunciation will catch up in the end – but for now, I’m going to keep him away from ‘We’re going on a Bear Hunt.”
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