Wednesday, July 11, 2007
The face of super-genius
So, Jack is showing signs of being, well, pretty darned smart. I hesitate to say "gifted", because I'm not even sure you can judge such a thing in a 2 year old, but he's definitely very bright. I posted here about realizing that he could count to 10 a several months ago and how no one knew where he learned to do that. A while later he could count to twenty...shortly after that he counted to 30...except he said "twenty-ten" for thirty. :) He also quickly learned all his shapes and colors. Then we realized he knew all the letters of the alphabet. Upper and lower case. And he can recognize written numerals too. We found that out when he started reciting license plates when we would walk through the church parking lot. Now, I'm seriously not sitting him down and teaching him this stuff. First of all, you can really sit a two year old down and teach them anything,,,,at least not this two year old. He has learned this all through play,,, play, and being read to many times a day. He loves to be read to and will often bring you a book and demand that you read it. He seemed to learn his alphabet from alphabet books we've read, and then cemented the knowledge with his wooden ABC blocks. He went through a stage of playing intently with those blocks many times a day, lining them up, naming the letters, grouping them by color, etc. He was so interested in the letters that the next logical stage seemed to be to start casually teaching him the sounds that they make. Again, I'm not one for formal teaching young ones, quite the opposite, but I do follow their natural interests wherever they may lead. So when I would change his diaper, I would hand him one of his blocks, say one with a "D" on it, and he would turn it over and say "big D" on one side, then "little D" on the other. Then I would say, "D says "duh", and he would smile and repeat it. Like a little sponge, he learned them all, and he would sit and practice with them on his own..."P says "puh"..."Q says "kw"...and often adding objects from books that we've read..."Q says "kw", queen". We've just been blown away by how quickly he's taken to this. One day, we heard him reciting the alphabet *backwards*. Backwards! Who can do that? Not me! Just quickly and naturally, "Z, Y, X...", all the way to "A". He also memorizes picture books...like whole picture books that we bring home from the library and read a handful of times. Makes me wonder what he'll be like when he *does* start kindergarten! He's just a joy because he enjoys it all so much...thoug at times it's awkward, like when you're out in public, say in the doctor's waiting room with a handful of other toddlers, and your toddler is walking around and pointing to the animals on the mural saying, "Hello orange lion. Hello green sea turtle. Hello purple giraffe." Then goes up to magazine covers and points to letters saying, "T says "Tuh",,turtle. I says "ih,,iguana,,,k says kuh, koala bear." Then goes to a toy clock on the floor and says, "Zero! Zero's the hero of the number tree! Get out of our tree the bumblebees shout, and all the numbers tumble out. Chicka Chicka 1, 2, 3, will there be a place for me?" And the other moms are staring at him, and finally they ask, "How *old* is he? Three?" Um, well, no, he'll be three in October. And then I feel oddly embarassed about the whole thing for some reason.