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3V0091.2

3V0091.02 Peggy’s Vocalization 4/23 serial 0091

Peggy is 3 months old today; 13 weeks tomorrow. Gretchen has been making noises at Peggy for quite a while. Her favorite seems to be a drawn-out /kI/ with a moist tongue so that a slight bubbling sound is added. Within the past 7 – 10 days Peggy has been repeating the sound after Gretchen. She has spontaneously been complaining with /ngae/ for over 4 weeks. Over the few days, I heard her say /dae/ and Miriam remarked /gi/. (and just now /gae/).. Gretchen noted a sound she trouble describing – but offered “sort of a cross between /d/ and /th/.” Her imitation sounded to me like an aspirated /d/. (/dh/?)

The speech Peggy is subject to [is] the kind that we pretend she can understand. For example, Miriam went over with a new toy rabbit and said, “Peggy, wanta feel my new bunny?’ then put the rabbit in her hand. Gretchen talks in short sentences or long phrases, sometimes making cheerful noises. When Peggy makes noises, Gretchen responds as if Peggy were attempting to speak meaningfully to her. My speech is rare for I usually sing or chant the bouncing rhymes. Usually I sing quiet songs that I like (such as “Windmills” by Alan Bell) but last night to Peggy’s great delight, I broke out in varied choruses of the Dixieland classic “A Closer Walk with Thee” with all sorts of sounds, each continuing for at least a complete musical phrase. Peggy was especially pleased by the plosives, the la-la-la’s, and the /ch/ sounds.

3V0091.3

3V0091.03 Mothers-view 4/23/78

While Bob entered the previous notes, I was playing with Peggy on my lap, making noises. At one point she laughed, a set of three distinct sounds.

She now, more often than not, takes one long nap (as long as 4 hours) in the day, usually after her second feeding around 11.

Over the past few weeks I have begun taking her out with me when I go shopping because she will cry when left at home where Bob is trying to work. She is soothed by the motion of the car and generally amused by all the bustle and novelty of the store. Except for one occasion she has behaved very well, i.e. sat quietly looking about her or fallen asleep. People stop to look at her (there must be a lot of frustrated grandmothers around). Yesterday the children and I met Paul Goldenberg and his wife Andy in the Chestnut Hill Star.

3V0092.1

3V0092.01 Visually tracking a conversation (4/24/78)

On 4/24/78 We went to visit the Clamans (and Peggy received the rabbit mentioned above). After the usual greetings and milling around, the children disappeared in the basement to watch baseball and the adults settled to talk in the living room. I sat on the couch with Priscilla, holding Peggy seated in my lap. Bob and Vic sat in chairs across the room, one on each side of the fireplace. Peggy began scanning this novel scene, her head moving from Priscilla on the left to bob in the center to Vic at the right and back again, pausing perhaps half a second to eye each person. she performed this back and forth viewing cycle continuously for a period of several minutes.
G.

3V0121.1

3V0121.01 Moving Peggy in with Miriam; verbal imitation: 5/23/78; 4;4

On May 23rd, Peggy’s fourth “month-day”, we moved her crib into Miriam’s room. For well over a month, Peggy has been doing without her 10 pm feeding, going to bed between 9 and 10, sleeping through the night and waking without fussing around 7:30-8 am (by which time Miriam has to be heading out for the school bus). We were confident that Peggy would not be a bother to Miriam, nor keep her awake, nor need attention at night (except under extraordinary circumstances). Another motive prompting our action was the observation that Peggy’s lower eyelids appeared slightly red and swollen. It should not be pollen allergy at her age, but we felt the cleaner, air-conditioned environment of Miriam’s room would be good for Peggy. As the week went on, it became clear that Peggy had a cold. Thursday she was a trifle fussy and snorted (?) more breathing. Friday morning was the worst part — dripping nose, sneezes and coughs (the later sounding as though her throat was hoarse), some difficulty breathing while nursing. Yet her appetite was only slightly impaired and her temper remainder cheerful.

Bob was holding her on his lap, trying to keep her amused because she looked so miserable. He reported that at one point he said, “Ha” for no particular reason, with no particular emphasis, and Peggy promptly repeated “Ha”, without any pause for “thinking.” He tried “Ha” again, and again Peggy replied “Ha.”

I have noticed this week that Peggy has suddenly started observing the materials composition tag on her crib bumper. This tag is about 2″x5″ with lots of black lettering. It is fastened to the upper edge in the center to one of the cross pieces of the bumper. When I put Peggy down to change her, I place her on a diagonal with her head up near one corner, so that I can work better (it is too cramped to place her crosswise with her feet facing me). This brings her head quite near the tag, and she began consistently to turn her head to look fixedly at it. A day or so later, she reached out to play with the tag with her fingers, feeling to find out what it was like.

3V0123.1

3V0123.01 Mimi Sinclair; Meltzoff move (5/25/78)

Yesterday Peggy came as Gretchen and I went to MIT to hear Mimi [Sinclair] speak on language and pre-linguistic development. Peggy put on a good smiling show for every one looking at her & was generally quite well behaved. She let out a few squawks during the lecture but was distracted enough by Gretchen not to be a nuisance. Before the lecture, we had introduced Peggy to Mimi and she told us not to be upset if Peggy made a little noise, only to take her out if she made a lot of noise. Mimi stuck out her tongue at Peggy, who immediately responded in kind, then “You imitate already. You’re not supposed to do that yet.”

3V0123.2

3V0123.02 Videotape Series Beginnings 05/25/78

Peggy was 4 months old on Tuesday. I’ve thought of starting a videotape series on Peggy’s development — to begin at 4 months — but don’t really know what to do. I would buy the tape and begin this early — partly to keep for my own memory a sense of what Peggy is like as a baby.
Bob

3V0125.1

3V0125.01 References for “Three Years and Talking” 05/27/78

In Thursday’s discussion with Mimi Sinclair, I showed her my “lifetime living plan,”. she asked about the work with Peggy, why I should wait until she’s four, I responded, “That’s what I want to talk with you about. She gave us directions (to me, the “us” refers to Gretchen and me) both for experimenting and reading. The reading references are 3. to Laguna and Leopold, for observational focus; and to Marcel Cohan for theoretical focus. We have settled on the following bases of data collection
1.) half hour videotapes every two weeks from 18 weeks to 104 weeks (4 to 24 months).
2.) naturalistic developmental observation with a rough frequency of written notes every two days.
the videotapes will have three sections: proto-conversations; action logic, and sibling play. The most exciting aspect of this project for me is that Gretchen will not merely be involved in it, but that it will be essentially her project. Beyond that, two other factors stand out.

First, I believe we will be asking the right questions: why does it take babies so long to learn to talk when they can do so much in action ?
Secondly, the data collection methodology and interpretation approaches which I have been developing in the Intimate Study seem appropriate with respect to the level of grain necessary to resolve the issue.

Not to pass unmentioned is that how a child learns language is one of the great, unresolved puzzles of our time and a major center of controversy.

Gretchen committed herself to the project yesterday and I spent the day gathering equipment and referenced books. Because Gretchen has no institutional affiliation and the project is not in any way grant supported, we will remain free to terminate it at any point if our best judgment requires that — this is an essential condition for research in the heart of the family. Robby and Miriam have agreed that it should be fun to play with Peggy in the experiment and both are eager to begin.

We will start on Monday, 5/29/78.

3V0125.4

3V0125.04 Gradual advances in time of a response: 4;4 (5/27/78)

I have mentioned that Peggy does not cry in the morning. Usually I will go to her when I begin to hear her move around, so often I find her doing press ups. When I lean over the crib and call her name, Peggy looks around until she locates my face and then gives me a big smile. Yesterday she was still lying with her cheek on the mattress (facing out from the wall) and her eyes closed. At the sound of my voice, she immediately opened her eyes and smiled. (The smiles appear more quickly than they used to — less time appears to be required to find me).

Carrying Peggy out of the bed room this morning after changing her diaper, I said something endearing to her, and she smiled in response. However, her mouth was already full of fist, so that her smile consisted of a tightening of the cheeks (observable from above whenever she smiles) and a wrinkling up of the nose.

3V0126.1

3V0126.01 Nursing: socialization and vocalizations; “owl cup” fascination 05/28/78

text needs to be recovered from earlier documents

3V0138.3

3V0138.03 Siblings Playing with Robby and Miriam: 6/9/78, 4, 18

text recovery needed for this vignette

3V0138.4

3V0138.04 Teething and Early Sounds 06/09/78

Peggy has shown well developed skill in bringing her hands to her mouth. Last weekend the smooth arch of her lower gum appeared bumpy in front, and Tuesday morning the lower stage right tooth had pushed through the gum. The major sign of teething activity has been hand in mouth, to the extent that when she is sat up to be burped, her hand goes right into the mouth. She also goes to sleep and sleeps so.

Two days ago Peggy had a long nap in the afternoon. When she awoke, towards dinner time, she began amusing herself by making the sound known as a Bronx cheer. She continued off and on all evening working on this new accomplishment, and the next day as well.

3V0179.1

3V0179.01 Temperament

Peggy is always responsive and cheerful in the morning. For some time now [vide 6/2 entry] she has responded to the sound of “Hello, Peggy” with a big smile, even before lifting her head up to see. It is clear she no longer needs to SEE me to react, and the lifting up of the head and shoulders is rather a preparation for being moved than a verification of my presence.

3V0180.3

3V0180.03 Extensive Babbling: 7/22/78, 5, 30

Peggy’s babbling is much more extensive now and she has quite a variety in her repertoire. She makes continuous noise, going on for many seconds, and lately has begun to do so on a high pitch tone as well. She makes a cranky, whiny “enh” sound when being fed to indicate “more.” She babbles a set of related syllables, such as “bab-bab-bob-bob-bab.” This morning she was lying on her back in the crib, playing with both feet, and if sitting, will lean over and chew on her toes.

3V0180.4

3V0180.04 Sounds. Babbling and playing with toes after rolling over 07/22/78

This morning about 7 am I heard Peggy babbling in her crib and woke Gretchen to listen. Peeking carefully through the door to be certain I wasn’t seen, I watched Peggy as she lay on her back, babbling and playing with her toes in apparent good cheer. Contrast this with the more usual crying that occurred when she first rolled on her back. Could it be that she now “has something to do” when accidentally landing in this position which makes it tolerable? [And is more accustomed to the sensation rather than being frightened by a novel shock — note by Gretchen] Can we notice whether her babbling occurs in other standard positions (e.g. in the infant seat, as I’m sure it does, or on her stomach, as is much less likely).

3V0180.5

3V0180.05 Sounds. Peggy and Bob sing a duet: “Going for a Ride” 07/22/78

Over past days, a week or so, I have bounced Peggy in my lap while singing the song from Sesame Street “we are going for a ride.” At one verse, instead of standard lines such as “and the train goes ‘toot-toot'” i substituted “and the baby goes –” and Peggy completed the verse “/oenh/”. In subsequent singing, she continued to sing her part. Perhaps we can capture this part-singing in tomorrow’s video session.

3V0182.2

3V0182.02 Verbal imitation game: /aen/ 07/23/78

At a late supper, one even less formal than usual and after she had been fed, Peggy entertained us at the table. Somehow a game began, I think between Peggy and me, of specific imitations on variations of a single sound — an aspirated, nasalized short ‘a’ (/oen/). The typical form was this —
1. while maintaining eye contact, Peggy made her sound, then looked at me expectantly

2. I imitated her sound as best I could
3. Peggy smiled broadly.

Subsequently, this procedure was repeated several times with sound simply repeated, drawn out, or doubled. Then I cited to Gretchen that Peggy had definitely begun this game based on my imitating her. Gretchen joined in the imitations — and so did Miriam and Robby. Peggy’s delight was extreme when he[r] sounds led us in chorus to imitation. After a number of iterations, I interjected a different sound /boo/ (one more or less in her repertoire but quite different from /oen/). Robby and Miriam imitated me a few times. Peggy looked quite attentively at us, but she did not join the chorus and I let the game drop.

3V0189.1

3V0189.01 Rolling Over (7/30/78)

This past week we have not observed Peggy’s intensive chatter in positions other than on her back in the morning or in her infant seat at feeding time — until just now. Peggy is lying babbling on her stomach. How she got there is a small tale in itself.
After being fed, Peggy was left alone on the bed while Gretchen went to bathe. I played with her, as she lay on her back — babbling and playing with her toes. when she made noises of the kind that usually precede spitting out just eaten milk I sat her up, patting her back, then folded behind her one of the pillows which prevented her from falling off the bed. Peggy “sat up” — showing a persistent tendency to fall on one side. As I propped her up with a hairy arm, she began plucking at the hair and her back slipped down from the pillow. This put her in a clearly uncomfortable position. She began pushing with her legs — the move of her on-the-back-accidental crawl … the result I ascribe to an attempt to escape a wet diaper while rolled on her back. Then came Peggy’s big surprise. As she kicked hard with her left foot, she rolled over her right side onto my arm (she had been leaning much in that direction). Peggy looked quite surprised. she showed a big smile right after her look of surprise.

Peggy has learned to live with accidentally rolling on her back — after first reacting with frustration after doing so (and perhaps fright), she managed eventually to entertain herself by playing with her feet and babbling. I conclude from her early reactions that rolling on her back was one of those defeats, and an important one, to which the growing infant is frequently subject. This incident marks the first indication that rolling over is a reversible operation through an autonomous action.
When I left Peggy on the bed — on her stomach — while writing these notes, I set her looking out the glass doors of our second storey balcony because Peggy has much enjoyed looking at the play of light on moving leaves. I sat on the far side of the room. when I left her vision field, Peggy cried and I remember say a few phrases trying to console her. Then I fell silent. After looking out the window a little, Peggy began a conversation. /aeh..aeh/ (remember that she couldn’t see me). when I imitated her, she broke into a big smile and tried to turn in my direction (I believe she still did not see me). Peggy and I continued talking this way for a while, after which she let her head down and began her current plosive dominated babbling repertoire.
I consider this incident as significant because it shows Peggy using even her small command of language in a social/functional way. She is not crying to get a response, she is using language — the social means for action at a distance [and even out of sight].

Where did this verbal turn taking originate ? Let’s say it began through Robby’s “entertaining” Peggy — which he did by making long strings of varieties of sounds — to which she responded with fascination. It continued with all of our imitations of Peggy’s noises — in what I see as our attempt to establish just this sort of communication with her [doing so massively reinforces of early imputation of personhood to her].

A second specific and probably very important source has been Peggy’s socializing at feeding time. Peggy frequently interrupts her feeding to draw back from the breast and to smile at Gretchen. Although this distresses Gretchen when her milk has first let down, later on in a typical feeding the both have enjoyed the smiling and Gretchen’s imitation of Peggy’s noises. How long has this been going on ? Perhaps Gretchen can recall precisely. A second index of the feeding socialization is Peggy’s distractibility at feeding. How long has it been now that Peggy stops feeding and looks at the speaker when anyone addresses Gretchen.

3V0189.2

3V0189.02 Socialization and the use of Language: /ae……ae/ 7/30

When I left Peggy on the bed — on her stomach — while writing these notes, I set her looking out the glass doors of our second-story balcony because Peggy has much enjoyed looking at the play of light on moving leaves. I sat on the far side of the room. When I left her vision field, Peggy cried and I remember saying a few phrases trying to console her. Then I fell silent. After looking out the windows a little, Peggy began a conversation: /aeh…aeh/ — (remember that she couldn’t see me). When I imitated her, she broke into a big smile and tried to turn in my direction (I believe she still did not see me). Peggy and I continued talking this way for a while, after which she let her head down and began her current plosive-dominated babbling repertoire.

I consider this incident as significant because it shows Peggy using even her small command of language in a social/functional way. She is not crying to get a response, she is using language — the social means for action at a distance (and even out of sight).

Where did this verbal turn-taking originate? Let’s say it began through Robby’s “entertaining” Peggy — which he did by making long strings of varieties of sounds — to which she responded with fascination. It continued with all of our imitations of Peggy’s noises — in what I see as our attempt to establish just this sort of communication with her (doing so massively re-inforces early imputation of person hood to her [sic]). A second specific and probably very important source has been Peggy’s socializing at feeding time.

Peggy frequently interrupts her feeding to draw back from the breast and to smile at Gretchen. Although this distresses Gretchen when her milk has first let down, later on in the typical feeding they both have enjoyed the smiling and Gretchen’s imitation of Peggy’s noises. How long has this been going on? Perhaps Gretchen can recall precisely. A second of this feeding socialization is Peggy’s distractability at feeding. How long has it been now that Peggy stops feeding and looks at the speaker when anyone addresses Gretchen?

3V0200.3

3V2000.03 Change of Babbling Vocabulary; relation of sounds to communication protocols 8/10

The babbling vocabulary is changing. Over past weeks, Peggy’s babbling was dominated by the /b/ sounds (with occasional /m/’s). Gretchen believes that once Peggy commands a consonant, she tries it with various vowels. My recollection of her dominant pattern is this: /bae//b/\//b/\//bwae/. During this week the dominant plosive has been replaced by ‘G’. Thus she is now saying /gae/gae/gae/. This is an opportunity for jokes with Miriam because her friends’ kindergarten imitation of babies was always /goo/goo/gae/gae/.

Which is more important in Peggy’s conversations: imitation of sounds or the recognition of a communication protocol? I believe the latter is — because when Peggy starts to talk (/ae/ae/) it appears not to matter to her what sounds are made by her respondent…as long as they are not so extensive and complexly modulated to suggest speech between competent speakers of the language. [Partially illegible note about the respondent talking to someone else]. The importance of specific imitations noted earlier (cf. 7/23/78) appears to be in making clear that she and I were communication [sic] by turns with each other, i.e. that the succession of sounds was not a random and uncaused verbal response.

3V0216.4

3V0216.04 Robby Pretending to Speak for Dapper Dan;
Peggy talking to toys and Scurry

One of the toys not shown on videotape is Dapper Dan — a baby-size cloth doll. After the session, I propped Dapper Dan in the corner of Peggy’s playpen and left her with the two older children reading in the library. From my reading alcove, upstairs I heard a conversation going on. Robby “hid” outside the playpen behind Dapper Dan. When Peggy started talking to Dapper Dan, he responded in the appropriate turn. After a while this lost interest for him. Over following days, Peggy addressed Dapper Dan on occasion and received no response and has stopped doing so (recall she also used to address Scurry with the same expectation).

Can we figure out some simple experiment which will permit us to determine how Peggy classifies things into speakers and non-speakers (or interactors and non-interactors)?

3V0221.2

3V0221.02 Peggy Following Gretchen’s Pointing to a Mirror: 8/31/78;

A couple days ago I was upstairs in the hall about 5-6 feet away from the mirror with Peggy in my arms. We faced the mirror, but Peg’s attention was on something (such as her toes) and she did not notice the reflection. I said, “Look Peggy, look at the mirror.” and lifted one arm up to point at it. Peggy’s head moved as her eyes followed my hands, then along the point. Her face lit up in a smile as she saw our reflection.

3V0225.2

3V0225.02 Recognition Vocabulary 09/04

What words does Peggy recognize at 32 weeks? It’s very clear she recognizes her name (and Gretchen avers she has for some time) with considerable discrimination. The evidence is of various sorts. When I fed her last night (pears on the spoon) she was distracted by her rattle and the liner of her chair,, preferring playing with them to interacting with me. Calling her name immediately attracted her attention. I found myself then giving informed instruction, i.e. emphasizing and using with regularity the word MORE in this fashion: with Peggy’s attention gained (and with the spoon in view) I’d say “more?” If she smiled, I’d bring the food to her mouth, scraping off the pears on her upper lip, and repeat “more?” The criterion ‘smile’ had to be more than that, the “wiggly smile”, a laugh on her lips and arms and legs flailing. I don’t think Peggy discriminates the word “more” from any other. (This might be another question to test in today’s videotape if she is fed in that interval.) Peggy responds to her name when others call her. Yesterday Miriam was overseeing Peggy as she crawled about on the bedroom floor. She talked to her in long phrases which Peggy ignored. When Peggy came near the bed, Miriam called her. “Peggy!” and instructed her not to go under. Since Peggy still continued crawling, Miriam repeated the injunction and its call several times. In every case, Peggy attended to Miriam when her name was called. Sitting on my lap the day before, turned sideways and trying to evade my grasp so that she could chew on the chair arm, Peggy turned to me both times I called her name. In other instances: Oscar….Feathers….Meggy….Peggy [inflections indicated in original] Finally with “Peggy” again she turned back to me.

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.

3V0234.1

3V0234.01 Gretchen Instructing Peggy in Naming. 9/13

WORDS — For the past week or so I have been talking more to Peggy concerning simple everyday actions. The prototype is getting her out of the crib. “Peggy, give me your hand.” (Holding out my hand to her.) “OK. Give me your other hand.” “Good girl. Now. Sit up…. Stand up…. OK. Hold on [while I change my grip].” And so on. She generally gives me her hand shortly after I hold mine out to her, with no coaxing necessary.

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.

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.

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.)

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.

3V0262.1

3V0262.01 Peggy Imitating Robby Noises.. 10/11

IMITATION — Peggy was sitting in her seat at the dining room table. Robby was seated at the table also. He made a series of loud kissing noises directed to her. Finally I asked him to stop. In the silence that followed, a soft but distinct repetition of the sound came from Peggy. Robby cried, “Look, Mom, she’s doing it! She’s answering me!”

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.

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?

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.

3V0306.2

3V0306.02 Giving dishtowels with vocal accompaniment:
Hey Dad!
“Hey Dad !” (or /hae//thaet/ ?) 11/24

HEY DAD! — Peggy has played giving games which started with my pipe and rapidly generalized to other objects. Some times [she] has come to me at the table in her walker and offered me whatever object was in her hand. Yesterday, I stood a few feet from Peggy in the kitchen. She waved about a dishtowel and then exclaimed something close to “Hey Dad!” and held the towel out to me. I took it from [her] and mimicked her, “Here, Peg,” (the mimicry was more intonational pattern than any other aspect) and returned it to her. This transaction was repeated twice more, then in two final givings and returns, Peggy said nothing and I instructed her, “Peggy, you’re supposed to say ‘Hey Dad!'”

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.

3V0309.3

3V0309.03 Verbal imitation of “Thank you”: first addition of verbal communication to object based protocol. 11/27

THANK YOU — Peggy has been playing ‘giving’ with her pipe for several days with her grandmother. Edie would take the pipe from Peggy, pretend to puff, and return it with a “Thank you.” Yesterday, as she wheeled about in her walker, she offered her pipe to Gretchen in a series of exchanges and in one, she accompanied her ‘giving’ with /dae/dae/ [the current syllabic favorite] — but what was remarkable was that she “said” ‘Thank you’ — she had the right tempo and intonation pattern. It was after Peggy’s “Thank you” that I observed how regular was Edie’s part in her protocol with Peggy.

RELEVANCE — This ‘giving’ incident is the first one wherein Peggy has appeared to add elements of verbal communication to an object-based communication protocol. What is noteworthy especially is the “turn around”, as imitation, occurring with a different person from the one who inspired it. This is clear evidence that the “phrase” is in Peggy’s mind. This incident is also the first one in which it is fairly clear she has “said” something. — She has just passed her ten month birthday. What other two syllable statements could we expect to recognize from intonation and context?

3V0317.1

3V0317.01 Temporal advancement of “thank you” to a command. 12/05

NO “THANK YOU” — Peggy’s use of the pattern has proved transient. She no longer says anything when given my pipe or a cookie or whatever. But the passing of the phrase was marked by an interesting transition shown in only a single incident: Peggy wanted some particular thing (what it was escapes me) which I had; she held out her hand with her “impure point” to me and said /øaen/. By a sort of temporal advancement, the verbal courtesy “thank you”, which was merely associated with the act of receiving a given thing, was transformed into an articulate word of command, i.e. “give me that thing I want.”

The holophrase “Here”, meaning “Pay attention to me and take this thing I am giving you” has reached a permanent position in Peggy’s repertoire. Her vocalization is most commonly /thae/ with a falling intonation — when she holds out an object, offering it in her ‘giving’ protocol. Peggy’s vocal accompaniment to giving occurs more frequently than it is omitted.

RELEVANCE — These notes document the transience and permanence of two different ur-phrases in Peggy’s repertoire. The “Here” ur-phrase, one of command, remains. The “Thank you” has disappeared with a single incident occurring where it was promoted to a commanding function.
– How else does Peggy get us to do what she wants?
– The most common want of me is “pick me up.” Peggy earliest showed me this want by taking hands and moving them under her armpits. Now more commonly, she crawls over and stands up, wailing, by holding onto my pants leg.
– Frequently, once she gets into my lap, her more specific objective is to twist away from me and seize whatever may be in reach on my table.

3V0327.2

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

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

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.

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.

3V0335.1

3V0335.01 Naming (Daddy’s nose grabbed – comprehension evidence) (12/23/78)

NAMING — I lay in bed this morning during Peggy’s early morning feeding. When she had finished nursing, Gretchen put Peggy down between us. They played together for a while, talking about noses. Then Gretchen asked, “Where’s Daddy’s nose?” Peggy turned around and grabbed my nose.

RELEVANCE — There are three basic points of understanding required for Peggy to interpret what Gretchen said. First, she had to tell (probably from the intonation pattern) that a question was being put to her and that her appropriate response was to indicate the topic of the utterance. Second, she had to know that the topic was a nose. Finally, she had to know the reference was to my nose, not hers or Gretchen’s.