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3V0233.1

3V0233.01 Peek a Boo, a Central game for Peggy 9/12

EYE CONTACT AND PEEK-A-BOO
Peggy has been playing PEEK for some time now, and it is a central game for her, i.e. one from which her knowledge of the world and objects’ permanence is growing outward (cf. notes on 8/26). When we sit at table and are satisfied with food, the situation becomes primarily a social one. Peggy’s repertoire being limited while her social interest is high leads me to try simple variations on games I know satisfy her social needs. For example, recently (during this week) Peggy played Peek-a-boo with the diaper Gretchen used to wipe up the food that escaped Peggy’s mouth. I didn’t have a diaper to play with. So, in my turn I first looked at her intently, smiling, then looking away said, “Where’s Daddy?” Then looked her directly in the eye, saying “Peek.” Peggy burst out laughing, a sure sign that she caught on to the way this new game was a variation of her familiar game.

In this same situation (of Peggy’s interacting but having a minimal repertoire), a situation recurring at nearly every meal, I started winking at Peggy. She enjoyed it tremendously (with only one eye closed, I could see very [well] her broad smile and kicking gestures of excitement).

RELEVANCE — these variations on Peek-a-boo are incremental extensions of a social game into the problem of object permanence. Clearly, people (even babies) don’t go away when they put a diaper over their faces. Playing Eye-peek makes explicit the temporary social separation of a very permanent object – an important person. When a child’s important toys — such as Peggy’s humanoid rattle — suffer Peek-a-boo, the extension of the sense of permanence from people to specific objects may be only an incremental step.

3V0233.2

3V0233.02 Peek a boo and the car trunk lid: 9/12

PEEK-A-BOO AND THE CAR TRUNK LID — Wednesday (9/6), when we returned Miriam to school after her appointment with the allergist, Gretchen bought some groceries and left me with Peggy. Peggy was very unhappy, having missed her morning nap and needing a diaper change — impossible till we should arrive home. Do you leave a baby squalling away, abandoned in the back seat of your car? The temptation is very great. I played with Peggy for a while, fetching her rattle (that humanoid again) whenever she threw it away (or dropped it — a distinction hard to make in the circumstance of her intense feeling). One very effective distraction — when Peggy dropped her rattle near me, i picked it up by the “feet”, showed it to her at the edge of her car seat, then as she reached for it, I slipped the rattle under her car seat. Peggy was buckled into her car seat and couldn’t get out — but she strained hard, leaning over the edge of the seat, looking for the no longer present rattle. We did this several times because it worked. She could be interested enough to forget her misery of the moment.

Seeing Gretchen in line, I went behind the car to open the trunk. Peggy’s car seat was fastened facing backward on the back seat. With the lid raised and her crying, I stepped to one side to wave at her through the window, to reassure her she had not been abandoned — and we were once again at playing Peek-a-boo…with the trunk lid in place of a diaper. After Peeking out once, the further novelty of the situation was clear. The trunk lid had two sides. I now appeared on the opposite side, watching Peggy. She was watching the point of my disappearance intently — but caught sight of me at my reappearance on the opposite side and turned to me smiling. I smiled back, disappeared and reappeared at the original side. Peggy was still looking where last I was, but saw me. Next I disappeared at the right (the original side) and reappeared there, found her still looking..; disappeared and reappeared on the left, to which she turned immediately. I left to help Gretchen with the groceries.

RELEVANCE — The first incident shows Peggy’s grasp of object permanence in the context of visible/invisible domains of space (cf. Piaget OIC, obs.____). The second observation is a naturally occurring analog of an object disappearing behind a screen — but with the difference that the permanent object, me, has its own motives for appearing in one place or another. Even observing that Peggy always looked to the right, we should ask — where should she look? If objects appear and disappear in ways one can’t explain, wouldn’t it be an easy theory to attribute to them some lesser quantum of will than those adults who loom so large in the infant’s life?
`
– circumstantial problems impel parents to distract infants
– interest is at the zone of proximal development
– parents provide instruction whether they intend to or want to or not

3V0233.3

3V0233.03 Understanding the command “No!” 9/12

UNDERSTANDING “NO” — Saturday I sat in my chair trying to write. Gretchen left Peggy on the floor of our bedroom/study while she tended to the wash. Peggy played with the sunlight and shadows made by trees moving beyond the porch and open screen door, then turned her attention to the trash can — a plastic container, about 6 by 8 inches and ten inches high, with a few papers visible at the top. Peggy raised her shoulders on one hand and reached for the lip of the trash can. “Peggy. No.” I interrupted her — and she put her hand down, turning to look at me. She raised her hand a second time. “Peggy. No.” She looked again. Then, still looking at me, she raised her hand toward the lip of the can. “Peggy. No.” After a fourth try came a very surprising response. Peggy asked me a question — one with no words, with only a rising intonation over an indistinct vowel. Was it her /ae/, the vowel of our verbal imitation game? It seemed between that and a shwa. But what did she mean (if anything)? Was it a whimper of frustration? Was it “Why not?” sans words? or “Can’t I, please?” I suspect to her it meant all of these. I said again, “Peggy. No.” She turned away to play with the sunlight and shadow.
After a few minutes Peggy was back at the trash can. Each time as she raised her hand, she stopped when she heard “Peggy. No.” But, after six more tries, I stopped interrupting her. She pulled over the trash can and scattered papers all over the floor.

Since my telling Gretchen that I believe Peggy understands in a limited sense what “NO” means, she has tried to control Peggy with that command — with, I suspect, unrewarding results (“control” here means get her to stop flailing out with eager arms at a spoonful of food as Gretchen tries to feed her).

RELEVANCE – This note continues our establishment of a catalog of words Peggy uses, our attempt to describe their original appearance in the context. I mentioned to Gretchen that we should try introducing to Peggy a distinction between “NO” and “LET BE” — the first to mean “stop what you are doing”, the second to mean “let that thing alone.”

3V0233.5

3V0233.05 Miriam as Instructor 9/12

MIRIAM AS INSTRUCTOR — Miriam frequently gets stuck with the job of caring for Peggy over short intervals of time. For example, she may care for her while Gretchen bathes in the morning. Miriam’s play varies considerably. Sometimes she plays interactively (cf. 8/26); other times she plays with Peggy more as an object than a person. Sometimes Peggy is little more than an excuse for Miriam to play with Peggy’s toys. For example, I tied a string to a small silver rattle and placed it around Peggy’s neck. It was soon a favorite toy. Miriam took it from her, made the loop smaller and placed it around the neck of Charlie (Peg’s bear) despite Peggy’s immediate and vociferous complaints.

At the beach, Miriam has been teaching Peggy to walk. (She supports her under the armpits and directs her feet by the pressure of her own legs.) She has been teaching Peggy how to play ring-toss with the ring tower. Peggy has many times nearly got one of the larger rings on the pole. Seeing her pick up the yellow ring (which Miriam left in the scatter of the floor) and reach up and out, hitting the pole with her hand in which the ring is grasped, inclines me to believe she is trying to get it on but has a motor skill inadequacy for the task. Finally, Sunday morning, Miriam sat on the floor with Peggy and pointing to the fire in our floor- level hearth, said, “Look, Peggy, look at the fire.” That is, she is giving labeling instructions in a format out of the Dick and Jane books. Peggy followed her pointing from where they sat together.

3V0233.6

3V0233.06 Other Selves in Television and the Mirror 9/12

9/13 (in Guilford)
Sunday morning (9/10) we had our first bedroom fire. To permit that I had on Saturday rearranged the furniture so there was none near the fireplace. After that initial rearrangement I set up the videotape and started viewing P 32 to make sure everything worked. Peggy was playing on the floor when she heard Gretchen’s voice from the TV and saw Gretchen and herself on the screen. Peggy was fascinated, crawled over and touched the screen, hitting it with her hand, even after I turned off the videotape and TV.

On Sunday, I again rearranged the bedroom furniture to make a small play area for Peggy. When she first played there, Peggy crawled over with the small silver rattle in her hand and beat against the TV screen as she had done before against the mirror in the living room.

RELEVANCE — What can Peggy make of these other selves in the mirror and TV screen? They must be a fascinating problem and one, unfortunately, way beyond her comprehension. Will they not complicate for her the problem of understanding the permanence and accessibility of people and objects? I suspect she will be able to handle them only as an accepted but uncomprehended mystery — as TV must seem to most children and adults.

3V0233.7

3V0233.07 Object Permanence and Throwing Away Toys |

Peggy sat in my lap, Sunday, playing with her rattle. The chair had several inches of space between the wooden arm and the seat cushion. Peggy’s legs dangled over mine at the left near that gap. She threw her rattle over the arm of the chair and immediately twisted about in my lap to look for the rattle through the gap of the chair arm and cushion.

RELEVANCE — The first incident testifies to Peggy’s experimenting with objects and space.

3V0233.8

3V0233.08 Dancing, disappearance, and reappearance 9/12

Last night (9/12) Peggy sat in my lap as we played some records I brought back from Boston. Robby and Miriam had been cooped up inside this rainy afternoon, and when they heard some fast jigs and reels by De Danaan, went into their own version of step dancing which rapidly became a session of dancing around the house. Behind the couch, behind the chair where Peggy and I sat, around again and past the piano. Peggy turned and twisted to follow their path. Out through the short hall past the fireplace — then Peggy saw them reappear through the glass doors on the far side of the fireplace (a see-through one). Peggy was engrossed. Here were important people in her life doing unusual things, appearing and disappearing. These sequences must have been very mysterious. Especially when hidden factors and actions make prediction impossible. Sometimes the older kids would dance past the far side of the fireplace and could be seen. Other times they would crawl past the opening below the level of the high hearth and reappear in the fireplace window from the wrong side.

RELEVANCE — The first incident testifies to Peggy’s experimenting with objects and space. The second highlights again the problem of conceiving of object permanence (in terms of predictable movement) when people with self-control behave in ways difficult to predict. Is object permanence developing the perspective that some things are not willful and mobile?

3V0233.9

3V0233.09 Debugging (major story) 9/12

A LITTLE DEBUGGING — Sunday morning I gave Peggy the “Fermi Spool” experiments wheel and axle: two 3″ wooden wheels with a fat pencil between them as axle. This was Peggy’s first rolling toy — and it was able to get away from her. When it came my way I rolled it back to her. Other times she would crawl over to where it stopped to retrieve it. In her little bedroom play area, one boundary is our bed, raised clear of the floor by a simple metal frame. The spool rolled under the bed and the axle caught on the upright. Peggy approached the bed frame from the end of the bed — some 12″ from the support. Crawling directly toward her goal, Peggy first whacked her head on the bedspring (a box spring). Then, reaching, stretching her arm to its utmost, she still fell inches short of the target. what a wailing was there! Crying too. Peggy was angry and frustrated. My strong inclination was to help her, roll the spool over. Instead, I waited. As she flailed about, her head made enough of an excursion [?] that she could see one of the wheels around the corner of the box spring. She stopped crying and began a different solution, crawling around the corner then parallel to the bed till close enough to search for the spool directly.

RELEVANCE — This is a straightforward example of Peggy’s stumbling [into] the “bypass” solution to an impasse. It would be most interesting to return her to the same situation and observe if she has remembered the specific solution — then present her with an analogous problem (or maybe do so first).

3V0236.1

3V0236.01 Gretchen and Miriam with “Peggy, come here.” 9/15

COME HERE — Gretchen has been teaching Peggy to respond in specific ways to a variety of simultaneous gestures. When Peggy wants to get up, for example, she usually cries and arches her back. Then Gretchen holds out two arms to her, wiggling her fingers, and says, “Give me your hand …give me the other hand.” On Peggy’s hands being taken Gretchen then picks Peggy up. I have seen Gretchen making similar gestures when Peggy was crawling on her stomach, crying to be picked up, but here “Give me your hand” was preceded by “Peggy. Come here, Peggy.” Peggy did not crawl to Gretchen and Gretchen immediately crossed to pick her up.

Playing this morning in our bedroom, while Peggy was crying as described Miriam imitated Gretchen’s gestures and called, “Come here, Peggy.” Peggy crawled over to her.

9/20 I have tried calling Peggy. She usually waits for me to come get her.

3V0236.2

3V0236.02 Miriam as Instructor (9/15/78)

Miriam has been trying to ‘teach’ Peggy to sit up and walk. The latter especially makes me uneasy because I fear her dropping Peggy. Miriam typically props Peggy up on the bed and returns her toys when dropped so Peggy doesn’t fall over reaching for them. I discussed sitting up with Miriam, asked if she wanted to participate in Sundays videotape (P34). she agreed to but, as she went off to get ready for school, she warned me, “Don’t you teach Peggy to sit up while I’m off at school.” Miriam looked a little incredulous when I told her Peggy would learn to sit and walk even if no one ever showed her how.

3V0239.1

3V0239.01 Naming buttons. 9/18

NAMING — Peggy was sitting in Gretchen’s lap, facing her. She began playing with the buttons on Gretchen’s sweater, first handling them then trying to put them in her mouth. “Those are BUTTONS, Peggy, BUTTONS. Don’t put them in your mouth.” Stopped from playing with Gretchen’s sweater, Peggy turned to her own sleeper and played with her buttons. “That’s right, Peggy, buttons. Those are your buttons.”

3V0240.1

3V0240.01 Substituting “bub” for /ae/ in conversations with Peggy. 9/19

/b/\b/b/\b/b/\b/ — Peggy’s conversations at table have continued much as previously described. Her primary phoneme is /ae/ in this use, which she repeats with many variations of tone, length and number of repetitions. In our conversations of this day, I tried to see if Peggy would imitate me when I introduced a different phoneme into the conversations. She did not. In response to her /ae/ variations, I said, “/b/\b/ /b/\b/ /b/\b/.” Peggy still said /ae/ variations.

3V0241.1

3V0241.01 Bub-bub-bub now Peggy’s dominant sound.

Peggy’s conversations today began with /b/\b/ /b/\b/ /b/\b/.
9/21 ff. /b/\b/ has now become the dominant phone in Peggy’s conversations. We’ve decided to do an extra tape on Sunday, P 35, to try to capture Peggy’s morning conversations.

3V0243.1

3V0243.01 Surface phenomena: chewing on the duck appliqué 9/22/78

Last Friday (9/22/78) Peggy went to the doctor’s. I was wearing a blue T-shirt with an anchor appliqué in the center.

Peggy showed quite a bit of interest in the anchor and tried to chew on it. Subsequently (9/27 and other times), I noticed her playing a good deal of attention to the duck appliqué on her orange suit — plucking at it and pulling the material far enough out and up to get it into her mouth.

3V0245.1

3V0245.01 Everyday prohibitions as source of naming 9/24/78

Peggy was crawling about on the living room floor as Gretchen chatted with a house guest. The floor was littered with her toys and the dog’s. “No, Peggy. Don’t chew on that. That’s Scurry’s bone.”

RELEVANCE — The kinds of verbal naming formulae witnessed by Ninio appear in everyday incidents of prohibition. Teaching a kid words from book-reading and looking at pictures appears a relatively unnatural task into which the woman subject apparently transposed the harder to document, more natural occurrence, from situations where verbal commands control the infant.

3V0245.2

3V0245.02 P035 is where Peggy’s verbal imitation began 9/24/78

9/24 On reviewing P 35, we can see that Peggy began verbal imitation RIGHT THERE! During the experiment, I thought she did not imitate my vowel sounds. On closer review you can see her imitate /b/\b/ /b/\b/ /b/\b/ – /ae/ and /m/\m/. Peggy is now able to learn words! How shall we follow her development?

3V0246.1

3V0246.01 Rejecting food: 9/25/78

Peggy being fed. Deciding she had enough, she stuck out her tongue, full and rounded, effectively blocking off her mouth. At another feeding, she did the same, then looked at me and smiled and opened her mouth for food — (Was it a test to see if she could refuse food that way if she wished ?) A day or so later, she refused food simply by turning her head aside (away from the table).

3V0247.1

3V0247.01 Naming buttons in verbal imitation.
Gretchen’s instruction “cookie”: 9/26/78;

The older children in school and Gretchen chauffeuring a house guest to the bus depot, Peggy was left alone in my care for a few hours today. After her nap and my tending to a variety of her needs, Peggy decided my lap was the place to be. In no time at all, she was investigating my buttons. My flannel overshirt was a rich field — buttons up the middle, on the pockets, and even (ahah!) on the cuffs. I attracted Peggy’s attention to those on her sleep suit. “Those are BUTTONS, Peggy, BUTTONS.” She paused, then “/b/\t/.” When I pointed to those on my shirt and said, “BUTTONS, Peggy, BUTTONS” she repeated, “/b/\t/.”

RELEVANCE — In this incident we can see coming together the labeling instruction that Ninio provoked and Gretchen more spontaneously provided with the verbal imitation first documented in session P 35 (9/24). The initial and final consonants are not the same as were all the examples of P 35. I would make no claim at this point that Peggy associates her production /b/\t/ with buttons, but it must be absolutely clear that through such situations as this Peggy will come to make naming associations. (Down stairs, now, I hear Gretchen feeding Peggy: Peggy, would you like a COOKIE, COOK-IE.” I assume she talks to herself partly for her own amusement at a monotonous task — as in this case she was partly imitating Sesame Street’s cookie monster.)

3V0248.1

3V0248.01 (9/27/78)

Peggy was playing with her ring toy on the bedroom floor. She had two of the bigger rings and was banging them down in an apparent effort to get them to roll. When they did so, she watched most intently.

10/2: Playing with Peggy and the smallest (purple) ring. I rolled it to her and she smacked it on the floor in an effort to make it roll !

3V0254.1

3V025401 Miriam naming people for Peggy. 10/03

NAMING — This was one of those bad days for Miriam where her wheezing/ upchucking of medicine kept her home from school. Thus early in the morning she was saddled with responsibility for Peggy. Miriam played with Peggy on the bed and as is frequently the case with Miriam, the instructor came to the fore. Touching Peggy, she said, “Peggy. Peggy,” then pointing to herself, “Miriam. Miriam.” I rose from the typewriter to recover some notes from another place. As I walked across the room, Miriam pointed at me. “Dada,” she repeated several times. Peggy mumbled some sounds which Miriam interpreted as “Mama.” “No, Peggy. Not Mama. Dada.”

3V0256.1

3V0256.01 Verbal Imitation of “shoe” 10/01

Gretchen left Peggy with me while she made cookies in preparation for the first meeting of Robby’s cub scout pack. After trying to constrain Peggy various ways and failing, I let her roam around the floor of our bedroom/ study. After beating the log carrier with her toy giraffe and munching on her hairbrush, Peggy crawled in my direction and as she has done frequently, began beating on my shoe. Catching her eye, I said, “Shoe, Peggy, shoe.” Peggy repeated, “Shoe.” Her imitation, tentative and lacking clear enunciation, had nonetheless the right components.

RELEVANCE — Miriam first, then the rest of us, finding that Peggy has begun verbal imitation, began instructing Peggy in naming. The main focus is on people, but buttons, spoons, and shoes come in for their share of attention. It’s very hard to say why. It’s clear there is some element involved of simply taking advantage of a new opportunity to have a hand in doing something significant. We must view acculturating Peggy as a very significant accomplishment. There is also the long persistent drive to help Peggy reveal to us who she is.

3V0262.2

3V026202 Wariness of Strangers

STRANGERS — Peggy seems now much more wary of others. Frank and Annie Schoeman were here Sunday (10/08); and Peggy would not let Annie hold her but screamed every time Annie touched her. Even with Miriam, who plays with her every day and always wants to hold Peggy and carry her around, Peggy will allow herself to be picked up, but will look around anxiously for mother.

3V0263.1

3V0263.01 Waving, communication through imitation. 10/12

WAVING — Peggy sat in my lap after dinner. We had indulged in some conversations with Peggy. Robby approached my chair and Peggy said /ae/, flapping both her arms as she has long done when excited. Robby repeated /ae/ and waved his right arm. Peggy smiled then /ae/ /ae/, waving one arm (her right) once for each sound. Robby imitated her precisely. Both continued this communication, varying the number of sounds and wavings, for over two minutes, with Peggy always directing.

RELEVANCE — (see comments in V0263.02)

3V0263.2

3V0263.02 Social Selection of some actions

Social Selection of some actions as interesting leads to their entering the repertoire.
RELEVANCE (of preceding story in V0263.01) — Here we see an accidental correspondence of two actions selected as significant, of interest, to another person. This stumbling upon an interesting new pattern so pleased Peggy that she elevated the combined element into a new pattern in her repertoire. Both actions were well under Peggy’s control when it happened. This is clear evidence that she can assemble joint actions from single actions. It also shows the build[ing] of a repertoire of ‘interesting’ actions which can serve as a pool of potentially meaningful communication transactions.

3V0267.1

3V0267.01 Associating Sounds with People. Interesting Action. 10/16

Peggy went through a period of several days where she seemed to associate her sounds with people. The most striking case was ma-ma(repeated an indefinite number of times with no obvious relevant stress on intonational accenting), which she apparently connected with Gretchen. This delighted Gretchen, who would typically respond, “That’s right, Peggy, ‘mama’, that’s me!” [note by Gretchen: to establish that connection firmly.]

The non-standard variation that made this so striking and amusing was Peggy’s putting on me the “label” /b/\b/ /b/\b/ /b/\b/ instead of da da.
RELEVANCE — As with her discovery that waving was an “interesting” action, i.e. one she could use in social exchange with another person, Peggy appeared on the verge of discovering naming as such an interesting action.

3V0275.1

3V0275.01 Sitting Up (10/24/78)

We have been disinclined to sit Peggy on the floor. We have no rugs because of Miriam’s allergies and when Peggy might fall sideways, she would take a solid crack on the skull. This night, both the older children played in the bedroom and Peggy crawled about on the floor crying. I did not want to pick her up, so I sat her down in the middle of the bed with her ring tower, her person rattle, and a box of blocks. Peggy stopped squalling and played quietly for half an hour, all the time seated in one place. During that time, she also extended her range. she began by leaning a little sideways to pick up her rattle; she then put the rattle in front and learned forward to get it. Finally, Peggy tossed the rattle beyond her reach, leaned forward between her legs half crawling, then she pushed herself back up to a sitting position.

3V0277.1

3V0277.01 Rolling Objects (10/26/78)

At home alone with Peggy, I brought her from the living room to play in the bedroom while I worked there. Peggy had been playing with tinker-toy connectors of this sort (sketch of wooden cylinder with holes on the top, bottom, and around the side).
Even when I put her, sitting, on a multi-folded quilt, Peggy dismissed her block, ring tower, and rattle to play with this object. It was round and should roll. thrown onto the quilt, it did not roll much. Peggy threw it on to the floor and pursued it when it rolled. Most striking were those situations, they were frequent, when the piece landed on its flat side and did not roll at all. These clearly puzzled Peggy. She picked up the piece, put it in her mouth, tried again.

Relevance: Peggy may have solved this problem represented by this piece sometimes rolling and sometimes not. The incident suggests a clear experiment – give her two objects, of about the same size: a ball and a cylindrical solid, follow her experimenting with both to see if she can dependably get the cylinder to roll. Problem: how can we tell whether she has it figured out or not ? Does she lose interest ? Does she get it to roll consistently ?

Finally, this contrast, if still a puzzle to her, could be a situation where we could witness the mouthing “shape-verification” that Mimi believes she has seen.

3V0278.1

3V0278.01 “Pick me up” gesture as precursor of causality. 10/27/78;

When wanting to be picked up, Peggy’s habit has been to crawl to your feet and look up, crying and wailing. Oftimes, we would hold out our hands as she crawled over to show both our readiness and that we wanted her to come to where we were. Gretchen mentioned yesterday a new and more explicit tactic of Peggy. She believes that as Peggy drew near her hands, she pulled Gretchen’s hands under her armpit. Did that really happen ? Peggy just did it again, with me, just pulling my left hand and then my right into those places.

Relevance: the really intriguing question here is whether to Peggy this is a sign or an action through which she “expects” to effect her picking up. I can’t imagine any test that would differentiate between the possibilities — and she most likely makes no such distinction herself. you can almost believe in a primitive association, a magical -going-together (as Levi-Strauss puts it) as the precursor of the idea of cause. This may be an example of it.

3V0278.2

3V0278.02 Pipe play: giving as a communication protocol 10/27/78

PIPE PLAY — When sitting in my lap, Peggy frequently ends up with one of my old pipes. (I still carry them about in a shirt pocket and chew on the stem, though I no longer smoke.) These pipes of mine have become a favorite toy of hers. I am only marginally concerned that she may eat a little carbon — but it does make a mess when she chews on the wrong end (her standard practice). I have become accustomed, occasionally taking a pipe from her, to “instruct” her by putting the stem end in my mouth. Playing [in] my lap tonight, Peggy had a different idea — she offered the pipe-stem end of the pipe to me by raising it and poking it close to my mouth. When I took it between my teeth, she laughed then took the pipe back from me.

RELEVANCE — This seems a spontaneous example of play-giving. Its significance is that this sort of game can (and probably will) develop into another kind of social communication ritual. — She has given the pipe to me, and I let her have it back immediately. Will she “turn around” this communication protocol? If I give to her, will she give back?

3V0282.1

3V0282.01 Spoon dropping = food rejection

Spoon play – After the edge has been taken off her hunger, Peggy reaches for the spoon as she is being fed. Or she grips the spoon with her teeth, holding it in her mouth until she can grasp it with a hand. Frequently, she plays with the spoon, turning it over and over, and feeling any food left in the bowl, and chewing on it. When she tires of this, she simply lets the spoon drop. Occasionally, she takes the spoon from my hand and immediately, deliberately drops it over the side of her chair into the floor.

3V0283.1

3V0283.01 Trapped fingers: a really bad bug (11/01/78)

Twice in these last several days, as she played with her box of blocks, Peggy has closed the box lid on a finger. The problem quickly magnifies because she leans on the box with her other hand. Peggy screams and cries; it has been clear that she doesn’t understand the problem at all. Her desire to solve the “problem” couldn’t be clearer.

With her finger hurting so much, it should be “obvious” that the cause is its being caught in the box — but it probably is not.

3V0283.2

3V0283.02 Clear Example of Object Concept crudeness -> prefer gradual elaboration (11/01/78)

Relevance: This is another example , albeit a peculiar one, of Peggy having a very crude object concept. she obviously recognizes that objects have an “inside”: This blocks box does — for it can be opened and blocks taken out; her cups have an inside into which balls may fit. It should not be expected that with the discovery of object permanence one “inherits” some knowledge about how surfaces relate to substances. Peggy apparently knows that blocks can go into her box – But she may not yet realize that the lid must be open for the blocks to get inside; so I would interpret her banging them on the lid of the box as an attempt to get them inside. Similarly, when she frequently bangs a ball against the bottom of a cup, I interpret the action as an attempt to get the ball into the cup, but one which does not acknowledge the need to pass through an open face of the object.

3V0287.1

3V0287.01 Assimilation of the pen to the pipe giving game. 11/05

GIVING — Out at the soccer field, I found Peggy in my arms and no pipe in my pocket. This does appear to be her favorite toy-with-daddy.) She was not dismayed, however, and took from my pocket this black, felt-tipped pen with which I am writing. (It looks a little like a pipe-stem, as it sticks above the pocket edge.) The interesting event followed Peggy’s identifying the object by mouthing — she held it out for me to take in my mouth. I did so, and she took it back soon.

RELEVANCE — Assimilation of a pen to a pipe-giving activity.

3V0293.1

3V0293.01 Giving with chewing. Earlier precursor possibilities. 11/11

GIVING — I tried to work in the living room while keeping the fire going and an eye on Peggy. After discarding most potential toys from the small table I put them on, she charged about in her walker, waving the conical peg from her ring tower toy (this plastic piece was replaced with a cylindrical peg months ago). Peggy rolled over to me, smiled, chewed on her plastic peg, then offered an end for me to chew on. I accepted her gift, held the end in my mouth, and she took it back.

— refer to the initial section of the videotape P 41, where Miriam played ball with Peggy for the first time. Peggy quickly accepted the protocol.
Gretchen’s only suggestion of an earlier protocol possibly related to this is her request that Peggy give her a spoon. I much prefer the simpler finger-in-the-mouth game — where Peggy, waving her hand about sometimes striking an adult in the face or near the mouth, would have her fingers kissed, nibbled, or sucked.

3V0293.2

3V0293.02 Putting Into (first success of pipe into pocket) (11/11/78)

Peggy sat in my lap this morning. I had just come from the bath. As she played with my pipe, Peggy stumbled on a discovery: not only have I hair on my chin but on my chest as well. She tested the attachment by pulling. Preventing any more of that, I pulled the rob tighter across my chest, bringing a pocket more directly into her arena of action. Peggy, who had been holding the pip by its stem and offering the bowl to mouth (her preference), leaned forward and very directly inserted the pipe, bowl down, into the robe pocket. She immediately drew it out.

Relevance: In the past, I have hidden my pipe in a shirt pocket, from which Peggy quickly discovered how to extract it. But this was the first incident where I;ve seen Peggy show an interest in putting a thing into a container (so different as a pocket) and succeed. She has put blocks in her open box successfully.

3V0294.1

3V0294.01 The IMPURE POINT and progressive structuration: 11/12/78

As observed more generally by Bruner, this infant Peggy started “pointing” around 9 months of age. (confer P40 and P41, I don’t know if earlier tapes contain unremarked examples of earlier pointing). Since the appearance, we have watched Peggy’s pointing more closely off camera. She does point with her index finger solus, but more commonly she points with her index, middle fingers extended and joined — as this morning she pointed at a fire I had built, saying at the same time /dae/dae/dae/dae/. Robby, now much engaged in cub-scouting, has been delighted to call to our attention the many times Peggy “give the cub scout salute.”

Peggy frequently sucks on her fingers and her impure point is often a wet one as well. A simple speculation is that Peggy is treating separately groups of fingers (that motor control is becoming gradually more discriminating — and that she is splitting out groups for distinct control which will finally result in specific, directed control of digits.) My scenario is that Peggy, sucking on two fingers, has the remaining two fingers closed with the thumb and when she removes her hand from her mouth to point, the command functions for the two fingers being jointly sucked. This speculation is ab initio unlikely because Peggy’s characteristic finger couple for sucking is the two middle fingers. I have asked Gretchen to watch Peggy’s finger sucking very carefully now before she does any pointing.

Relevance: I consider this hypothesis a good one to test because, joining as it does Berrill;s view of progressive structuration with observable phenomena, I might come up with a strong contrary view to Bruner’s offhand contention that the development of the pure point is “encoded in the genome.”

3V0297.1

3V0297.01 Pointing at Bob: 11/15/78

Yesterday morning I was sitting on the end of the bed with Peggy on my lap. Bob was in his chair, behind and to my right. All three of us faced in the same direction. Peggy was babbling away and when she said /dae/dae/dae/, I asked her “Where’s Daddy? Where’s Daddy ?” Peggy immediately turned to her right, looking over our shoulders, and indicated Bob with an impure point.

3V0300.1

3V0300.01 Pointing: no physical carryover; use as a probe-> pointing: 11/18/78

Peggy always points with two fingers. This is so obvious to us we should not let it pass without saying. My earlier speculation that this related to her finger sucking pattern was wrong. The two fingers are a probe. She puts them in Gretchen’s mouth when offering fingers to be sucked; she scratches with them. (Frequently Peggy sucks the two middle fingers of her left hand and explores her head — say an ear with the two forefingers of her right hand.)

3V0306.1

3V0306.01 More about pointing; pointing related to sucking: 11/24/78

A few days ago Peggy was chasing Scurry around the kitchen. Using her two forefingers as a probe, she rolled over to Scurry and poked at her nose as the dog backed away. While doing this, Peggy looked at her hand and, studying it, curled up her middle finger.

Peggy continues to point with two fingers of her right hand and suck on the two middle fingers of her left hand. she doesn’t usually suck on her right hand. Gretchen tells me that two days ago she saw Peggy sucking on her right hand – and she was sucking her two forefingers.

Relevance: Peggy’s focus on her forefinger is the kind of incident through [which I] expect a progressive discrimination and control of the digits to gradually develop. It might well be than many children would first segregate a forefinger from the hand-groups, whereas Peggy shows a different parting of the forefingers into two groups of two.

The discrimination of finger sucking patterns and frequency by hand is an observation we will follow. But because Peggy uses the right forefingers as a probe — and we can not claim we saw her with two different sucking patterns before that use began — we can not argue that the sucking pattern preceded probing unless through an analysis of finger sucking incidents in the videotapes.

3V0306.3

3V0306.03 Pervasive Instruction. 11/24

PERVASIVE INSTRUCTION — Peggy’s maternal grandmother (Edie) has been visiting us for the week around Thanksgiving. Six months ago she played “Clap hands, here comes Charlie” with Peggy and is delighted that Peggy claps on command and gets others to clap by doing it herself. While she sat across the table and clapped, both imitating and leading, she added a new behavior to Peggy’s repertoire — she clasped her hands and held them up over her head. I don’t know how many times it took before Peggy imitated her.

Taking up such an action is something very ‘natural’ to Peggy right now, because it fits in with a more general activity she has engaged in for the past two weeks (at least). Peggy is exploring the parts of her body she can’t see. Sitting on the floor, she lifts both hands up behind her head (almost tipping over). I have seen her play with her hair when doing that. She has played with her silver rattle-cum-string, the string end in one hand and the rattle in the other, lifting both up and beyond her head then pulling the string down behind her back.

RELEVANCE — Both of the preceding observations show adults responding eagerly when Peggy shows herself capable of learning from them. I responded ‘automatically’ to Peggy’s verbal addition to the giving game, before I even noticed what I was doing. Edie introduced her variation on ‘clap-clap’ and made her mark on Peggy.

Finally, Peggy’s exploration of her body should be marked at this time. It may show her conceiving of herself as a complete and circumscribed “object” — at least as an entity.

3V0309.1

3V0309.01 Standing in the crib; not knowing how to sit down: 11/27/78

Saturday afternoon, when her nap should have been coming to its natural end, Peggy started crying most vociferously and continued doing so until rescued. Going into the girls’ room, Gretchen found Peggy standing in the crib, grasping the top rail for dear life, presumably crying because she didn’t know how to sit down. This scenario has been replayed daily since then with minor variations — Peggy standing up in the play pen and at the railing to the living room balcony.

3V0309.2

3V0309.02 Emergence of the Pure Point: pointing and eating: 11/27/78;

As we discussed Peggy’s experiments with her grandmother at the dinner table, when Peggy pointed with her forefinger alone, I remarked to Edie that such an action was what Bruner called “a pure point” and explained our argument at DSRE awhile back. In this context, Gretchen mentioned that though now Peggy points with two fingers, in this specific case her pointing had been preceded by using the forefinger to poke about in her mouth in an attempt to remove an unwanted bit of food. Gretchen added that this use of her fore finger was characteristic, much more common than poking about with several fingers or her right hand in her mouth.

Relevance: Can’t “the pure point” emerge as a melding of diverse actions under social direction thus: as finer sight control is achieved, with the digits of the later state more useful as a general probe, the refinement might proceed by discriminating one finger (the forefinger) from the cluster of digits — this pattern would show the sudden appearance of the pure point; alternately, the discrimination might be more balanced, the digits-as-probes splitting into two groups of two – this is seen in Peggy’s “impure point.” Getting solid bits of food out of the mouth is an activity which might generally favor using only one finger (it fits between gum and cheek better than the fist) in the most propitious circumstance, i.e. where the sensitive and knowledge based directions of behavior and interpretations of feedback are richest — in the mouth. If the mouth is the crucible in which digit control is developed and refined, its recognition is socially witnessed by its application, i.e. by its use in pointing. If we witness a new skill of single-finger action developed in poking around with food bit in the mouth transferred to probing behavior or to object indication, we are using a socially witnessed observation to notice an extension from a much more intrinsic area of experience. Isn’t it sensible to think that the use of the forefinger to point would be not merely witnessed but even directed by social examples?

3V0321.2

3V0321.02 Putting on and Putting into (12/09/78)

Yesterday I sat Peggy down on the bedroom floor and pointed out the toys. Her blocks box was there, and I opened it up for her. It was empty. Peggy looked, and immediately grabbed a block off the floor and plunked it into the box. True, she picked it up again and took it out. Then she repeated this sort of thing two or three times. The last time, she left the block in the box, and picked up the box by the handle, swinging it around.

3V0327.1

3V0327.01 Imitation game, Gretchen and Peggy. (12/15/78)

IMITATION GAME — Several days ago Peggy and I were playing a familiar game as she sat in her high chair. Peggy would beat on the tray with the flat of her palm somewhere between two and seven times, then wait for me to repeat what she had done. She varied the number of whacks each time. Finally, she turned her head sideways, palm vertical and thumb down, and gently beat a few times on the tray with the tip of her thumb. Then she looked expectantly at me, and laughed with delight when I imitated her action.

3V0327.2

3V0327.02 Helen Keller as archetype (12/15/78)

Helen Keller situation as extreme exemplar of every infant’s plight.

3V0327.3

3V0327.03 Trapped fingers bug manifest again (12/15/78)

BLOCK BOX TRAP — Playing on the bedroom floor just now, Peggy got two fingers trapped in the [block] box. She could not get them free because she was leaning on the lid with the other hand. This has happened to her a number of times over the weeks the box has been available. She still does not seem to understand the problem.

3V0329.1

3V0329.01 Pointing and imperative /dae/. Social rich interpretation. 12/17/78

POINTING AND NAMING — Over the last several days Peggy has been VERY cranky. She always wants to be picked up and makes this clear in two ways: she whines or cries; she crawls over and climbs up on your leg. New teeth are definitely coming in (but whether this is adequate to explain her crankiness I cannot say). In this general situation, it has been hard to pay attention to Peggy. But one development has surfaced. When Peggy wants some object she can see in your hands — a pipe for instance — she now reaches out, pointing with two fingers and she says /dae/ with an imperative tone. (She has been doing so for 2 or 3 days now. The frequency is declining and it may drop out of manifest common behaviors.)
This use may derive from the ‘thank you’ and ‘here’ with which we accompany the object exchange in Peggy’s giving. (The inflection of ‘here’ is usually imperative as in “Here. Take this.” as contrasted with the less directive ‘here.’

RELEVANCE — Having re-read the notes above, what I find strange and most in contrast, is the way we actually interpret what Peggy says. Children and grownups hear (assume) Peggy is saying /thaet/ (or is it /daet/?). We interpret what she appears to use in command as a verbal, further- specification — no = we interpret her pointing as a further specification of a nominal or prenomial reference to a thing which we assume she wants.

3V0329.2

3V0329.02 Reflections on putting (12/17/78)

If Peggy has yet to distinguish the interior of objects from the surfaces (in the sense of not understanding hollowness, how can it make sense to say that she is putting one thing ONTO or INTO another ? What is required is an imputation of a goal to her — one impossible to infer with confidence because when we see Peggy put one object ON another, we can’t tell if she is trying to get it IN and failing. Despite the caveat, that is precisely what we must try to do in the hope of trying to appreciate what reality the baby is constructing. The only (way?) of describing this may be through specifying the specific problems the infant is trying to solve, e.g. why do cups go together in one place, boxes sometimes do and balls never do ?

I speculate that “putting into” is the more profound of the relations being explored because it connects directly with the problem of surfaces and substance. The latter is an essential problem to solve in the construction of the visual ordering, i.e. three dimensional descriptions of 2 dimensional signal reception. “Putting onto” may have, as Marvin claims, profound consequences for the logic of thought — but surely it can be no more profound that the construction of space with objects.

3V0331.1

3V0331.01 Pointing and Naming. Comprehension evidence. 12/19

POINTING AND NAMING — Today I asked Peggy, “Where’s Peggy’s NOSE?” She brought her hand up to my nose [I don’t remember if she pointed; I think it was the whole hand] and very decisively said, “Da!” NOSE appeared to be the operative word.

3V0335.2

3V0335.02 Trapped fingers again (12/23/78)

Once again the box got her. Gretchen and I are beginning to be surprised that she can’t solve the problem (ie. fingers caught between lid and sides of the box; second hand leaning on the lid.)