I have read in books that in between years two and three children’s vocabulary take off. I have read this in books, magazines, online websites, and other mommy blogs. I have heard this from my pediatrician as well as from other mothers that I know. And yet, I continue to worry that I am doing something wrong. At least I felt this way until very recently.
My son William turned two-years-old in February and had an arsenal of only a handful of words that he would use on a daily basis. You know the words, the ones that get him what he wants (please, more, juice, yes, NO…). For some reason I got it into my head that there was something more that I could be doing to help him develop his language skills. I talk to my son, read books to my son, sing to my son, interact and play with my son on a daily basis. The only thing that I was not doing for my child was socializing him with peers.
I am a stay at home mother. Putting my child in a daycare is simply not feasible unless I go back to work. I love my job as a stay at home mom and do not want to go back to working just to pay for daycare. So I needed to come up with a better way to socialize my child.
I signed up for park district mommy and me classes. I started participating in a story time at my local library for tots. Through this group I met some moms who talked about a website called MeetUp where they met other mothers that had organized playgroups and playdates in people’s homes and at public places like parks and the zoo. I joined up and started participating in organized play-groups in the area. I set up playdates with a girlfriend of mine with a child around my sons’ age as well.
My child likes to play chase and interact with other children. He is very independent. He does not hang on my apron strings and he does not cry when we enter a new and unfamiliar situation. He may act a little shy at first while he gets his bearings, but this does not last long. He is not content to simply sit for long periods of time and play by himself. Although William doesn’t talk a whole heck of a lot, he wants to interact as much as possible when there are other children present. I think that this comes from being around older cousins and watching how they interact as well as playing with mom and dad.
Within the last couple of weeks William’s vocabulary has taken off. This is quite humorous because we have been cooped up in the house with no play-dates and no park district classes while we recover and adjust to having a new baby in the house. William has started to string words together to form small sentences without having the lines fed to him. He is experimenting with new words. Although it sometimes takes a couple of tries to decipher what he is saying, I can usually understand what he is trying to say. We try to correct him when what he is trying to say is incorrect and give him positive reinforcement when he gets it right.
I know that pretty much all parents worry that they are not doing everything that they can to make sure their child gets everything they need. I am one of those parents. I worry. When I worry I research. Then I worry some more. It is a vicious cycle. To top it off, the thing that I am worrying about ends up being something that happens when it happens. Not something I have a lot of control over. I am learning everyday to let go of the control freak in me a little bit at a time. This is very difficult for me.
I am incredibly proud of the strides my little man is making. Right now he is all about the pirates. He parades around the house saying “Yo Ho!” and “Ahoy Matey.” It is the cutest thing ever!
What funny things are your kids saying?