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Peggy Study, Panel P113

Themes: Language Development, Object Exploration, Social interactions
Source: (Lawler); date: 3/23/1980

Text commentary: These clips have grainy video; this may be one of those dark videos brightened during digitizing

P113A “We Play Letters”, 2mb

P113B1 Standard Objects, 16mb

P113B2 Standard Objects, 13mb

P113B3 Standard Objects, 22mb

P113C “Where Mommy?”, 7mb

P113D1 Play Doggies, 22mb

P113D2 Play Doggies, 22mb

P113E Letter Desk, 17mb

P113F Play with Animals, 15mb

P113G Cat in the Hat, 21mb


Peggy Study, Panel P118

Themes: Language Development, Object Exploration, Social Interaction
Source: (Lawler); date: 4/27/1980

Text commentary: These clips begin with Peggy rehearsing her early form of knock-knock jokes.

P118A1 Bag of Blocks, 20mb

P118A2 Bag of Blocks, 20mb

P118B1 Toy People & Blocks, 17mb

P118B2 Toy People & Blocks, 17mb

P118C Letter Desk, 13mb

P118D1 Standard Objects, 16mb

P118D2 Standard Objects, 20mb

P118E Standard Objects, with Miriam, 21mb

P118F Pokey Little Puppy, 3mb


P146G: Nesting Boxes and Cups 29mb

P146G Clip Notes

Notes: 6:25 by Analyst: News, 7/03/2013; P146GdetailsA, 10/12/13; P146GdetailsEF, 10/12/13; P146GdetailsH, 10/12/13;
Setting,Props Cedar Hall, Family Room: Nesting Boxes as well as Nesting Cups
Actors,Aims Peggy and Bob; GPL on camera.
Episode A:

Starts with Peg completing asssembly of nesting cups.
Bob: “Good for you! You did it again.” Peg: “Yep.”
Peg: pours out the cups onto the floor to repeat her performance and Bob interrupts, challenging her with with a “harder” problem if she is willing.
Bob: walks off camera to get the nesting boxes; her glance follows him, a look of uncertainty on her face.
Bob: puts down the boxes, asking “Do you think you can do it with these?”
Peg responds confidently “Oh yeah. I can do it with those.”
Bob: I don’t believe it.” Peg continues organizing the cups for stacking. Bob: interrupts
Episode B:

Bob: “Could you turn around this way, Peggy?” Then he collects all the cups. She moves, but not as he wanted, so he taps on the floor and says, “Sit over here.” She does then starts drawing the cups to her.
Episode C:

Peg: says “******” expressing an intention to asssembly all the cups, and then proceeds to do so, commenting on her actions / thinking out loud. She starts saying “No,” when running into an insertion block, and then proceeds directly to remove the blocking cup to make room for the candidate in her hands.
Bob: notes she got “a whole lot of yesses there and hardly any ‘no’s’.”
Episode D:

Bob: pushes forward the nesting boxes, in various orientations and positions, “Do you think you can make these go together ?” As she leans over to the boxes, he removes the cups “I’ll get these out of your way” and Peg expresses objection but no verbal protest.
Bob: says I’ll give them back in a little bit, OK?”
Episode E:
at 2:0
Peg: Picks up the smallest box and inserts it into the large box (at 2:0), saying “You go like this-a-way.” picking up the medium size box. She sees the small box blocking and removes it and tries inserting the medium box in the large one in an off-orientation and without aligning the corners.
Peg: Then says “you gotta play those a little bit,” while rotating the medium box on top of the large one.
Peg: “There’s it fit” and let’s it down.
Episode F:
at 2:10
Immediately picking up the small box (at 2:10) she changes her plan, moving to insert the assembled boxes into the largest one — whose orientation she needs to change and does so with one hand while holding the other boxes with the other. She gets it in directly, then turns to and picks up the smallest box, inserts it in the stack and says, “I did it.”
Bob: “I didn’t think you could do it.” GPL: “Wow!”
Episode G:
at 2:24
Bob: returns the collection of nesting cups to P. (at 2:24) turning them all upside down (presenting the alternate stacking challenge) but…
Peg: says “And I can turn them all up.” She proceeds to do so and concludes, “I did it.” (at 3:13).
Episode H:
at ~3:13
Peg: returns to assembly of nesting cups, making two wrong-size insertion attempts. She continues with the verbal commentary of “no’s” when she sees a blockage. She runs into a number of problems;
Bob: says “she apparently has not realized yet that the sinking of one cup completely within another indicates there is an order problem.” GPL disagrees.
Bob: asks “Is it clear to you as it appears to me she doesn’t pay much attention to the color, though it may have something to do with memorizing short sequences.”
Peg: completes stack at 5:15.
Bob: There you are. What do you think.”
Peg: “That makes my big city.”
Episode I:
at ~5:15
Bob: tries to interest Peg in “another kind of big city you can build with the same cups,” but she is resistant and keeps them to herself, again distributing the cups for re-executing the inclusion activity.
Unclear dialogue *****. (ends at 6:25)
This video panel culminates the triumph of order, and Peggy’s mastery of physical inclusion relations with those familiar toys of years’ long-standing. Her achievement was exactly as Mimi Sinclair had projected, around the end of her third year. How precisely she developed in this line is one of the core themes of the Infant Peggy Study. It will be the first exploration in respect of space and the relations of objects in space.

Panel P146, Order Triumphs.


3V0001.01 Recollections of Peggy’s birth 1/23/78

After telling our landlord, as I returned from walking the dog Sunday night, that the baby was not expected for a week, I realized on coming inside that Gretchen was showing the classic signs of imminent labor. All day she suffered lower-back muscular pains, she frequently experienced shooting pains in her legs. Consequently, I was not too surprised when, upon waking at 4:30am, I found Gretchen already in labor. I was surprised she was so far along, with contractions every three to four minutes. Gretchen explained she had wakened at 2 with contractions at 15 minute intervals but felt I needed sleep and saw no reason to wake me.

The suitcase had long been packed. We dressed, readied the car, considered then skipped breakfast, and left for the hospital with deliberate haste. The roads were passable but still in bad condition (24″ of snow had fallen on the 20th and 21st). There was no traffic at the hour and we proceeded without difficulty to the hospital by 5:30am.

By 6am, Gretchen had been admitted and undergone the regimen of delivery preparation. The doctor arrived, checked the cervical dilation, broke the bag of waters, and said he anticipated delivery between 8 and 8:30. The pains were very bad. He ordered a shot and directed me to massage Gretchen’s lower back. By 6:30, it was clear the foetus would not wait. I called our landlord at 6:35 to wake the children and send them to school as he had agreed. During the call, Gretchen was removed from the labor room, I hurried after to the delivery room.

The doctor held the head as it emerged…. Holding her upside down, the doctor suction-cleared her mouth, checked her breathing, and laid Peggy on Gretchen’s stomach.

Peggy was pale blue at birth, as was Robby; I don’t recall Miriam’s color. Peggy’s color led me to ask her Apgar rating (it was 8 at both the first two judgments). Her weight at birth was 8 pounds 8 ounces (Robby had weighed in at 9,2 and Miriam at 8,10). She was delivered at 8:46. The labor was very short (compared to 14 hours for Robby and 10 for Miriam) and painful, since in effect Peggy was delivered without anesthesia. The umbilical cord was cut and Peggy was removed to a warming basket.

At 7:30, Gretchen and Peggy were back in the labor room, resting. I called home to find Robby and Miriam puzzling over whether they should go to school or whether it had been canceled. During a third call, at 8:15, I found school was canceled. The children had to stay at home alone, but had our landlord to call on should any need arise. None did. Robby was able to talk to Gretchen during this call, and he seemed very happy that things had gone so well and that Gretchen could assure him she was allright.

Around 8:30, Peggy was taken to the nursery where she spent most of the morning. Gretchen got cleaned up while I had breakfast, then we spent the morning together in her room in the maternity section of the hospital.

Gretchen added later in a marginal note, about suffering terribly at the delivery — ‘a relative statement – who knows how bad it would have been. Also there is the knowledge you are truly on the home stretch. The entire extent was “really bad” but it was less than half an hour.’


3V0015.1 Sheldon Wagner proposes Meltzoff Experiment 2/6/78

Sheldon Wagner called with congratulations on Peggy’s birth today. During a long conversation, he asked if we would be willing to informally try an experiment on infant imitation which seriously refutes Piagetian theory (I found the reference in a back issue of Science: imitation of Facial and Manual Gestures by Human Neonates, Andrew Meltzoff and Keith Moore, 7 Oct. 1977.) Gretchen and I agreed to go ahead and do it. (This means we will do it very soon, maybe hard to get the videotape equipment and a mirror — maybe we shouldn’t get that fancy.)


3V0017.1 Early body movements 2/8/78; 0;17

Peggy’s umbilical scab has fallen off, so it no longer matters if she rolls over on her belly. She and I were laying on the bed after Gretchen fed her. I proposed her up on her right to aid in digestion, but she would not be still. Still rooting a diaper, she flopped onto her belly in a squall of tears and wailing. She was vigorously kicking with crawling gestures and continued doing so. With her left arm placed as if she were doing a pushup (and her right seemed trapped under her body), Peggy kept on “crawling.” She had no traction on the sheet so her motions seemed to be a general flailing until I put my hand at her soles, giving her a surface to push against though still no traction at the knees. Even though she could not lift her head up, Peggy pushed herself forward over four inches (in about two minutes) before I restored her to her initial position.


3V0018.1 Bob comforts Peggy during the night 2/9/78; 0;18/

Near midnight this morning, Peggy woke Gretchen, apparently ready for a late night snack. After nursing for only a few minutes, she lost interest. Gretchen got quite frustrated at being waked to no purpose and returned Peggy, crying again, to her crib. When I could stand the noise no more (it was not too loud in itself, but I felt Peggy was keeping Gretchen awake), I picked up Peggy and walked her up and down the loft. I had no intention of continuing this exercise, but Peggy would not suffer quietly being put down. I climbed back into bed, still holding her and continued to do so for half an hour or more before rising to write this note. Peggy has taken my place in bed, but she is quiet.


3V0030.01 Why we abandoned Meltzoff Experiment; Infant communication 2/21/78; 0;30

Gretchen and I agreed to do Meltzoff’s experiment as requested by Sheldon but later changed our minds. Upon a close reading, I decided the only valid replication of the experiment would require both videotape and the mirror in my office. The only practical way to effect the experiment would be to go to the Logo Lab and do it there. My scenario included a social call to introduce Peggy, perhaps with Sheldon helping in the experiment on the 13th.

This vision of the work was rapidly undercut (perhaps overlaid would be a better word) by the Blizzard of 1978. The 27 inches of snow, clogged courtyard, impassable streets, and driving ban kept us marooned in Brookline through the 14th. Indeed, on the 11th, our situation still looked difficult enough that Robby and I hiked the mile and ahalf to the Star market and back to get staples in preparation for a second storm predicted on Monday the 13th.

The other factor causing abandonment of the experiment was the inhibition its potential was introducing to our interactions with Peggy. Specifically, the problem was this. Gretchen knew the gestures used in the experiment, and having read the article also, knew the claim that the parents were unaware of them. That fact was the basis of excluding one explanation — that the gestures were not rehearsed by parents and baby outside the lab in any biased way. For Gretchen to avoid that sort of rehearsal, even unconsciously performed, would have meant her stifling her communication with Peggy. We both decided this was intolerable for the protracted period our snow bound isolation imposed. The major difficulty is that the parents’ dominant inclination is to establish a communication link with this child. This is attempted naturally by the parent through his imitation of the child’s facial gestures. Since the baby’s repertoire is quite limited, the gestures the parent isolates are those used by the Meltzoff experiment, i.e. any care provider for the baby, attempting to establish communication with the baby would be lead to imitating the baby’s gestures, I believe there is no way to prohibit this cycle of reinforcement though one may, as experimenter, chose to remain ignorant of it by refusing to inform the baby’s parents what is going on. Just because you don’t tell the parents what your experiment is, does not imply you can claim they have not biased it beforehand. This is especially the case where the process involved, adult-baby communication, is central to the social binding which must be established for baby’s to be deemed worth the trouble of caring for and enduring.

Not only Gretchen, but the children and even I, were imitating the baby’s gestures at every turn of our attention to her. By the middle of Peggy’s third week, i.e. the 15th, Gretchen was claiming that Peggy was really smiling at her. By the 20th, I was willing to concur. That is, Peggy was sufficiently socialized to be either responding to some non-obvious cues or to be attempting to manipulate the person holding her when recognized (she smiled at me also, but more often at Gretchen).

A final quibble: how did Meltzoff get those babies to take a pacifier so placidly, to have it popped in and out of their mouth without a considerable objection ? Were all bottle fed and expecting that sort of nipple ? Peggy absolutely refuses a pacifier, even one purportedly in the shape of the human when deformed by sucking. She would take it in her mouth a little, then spit it out after a few seconds. Was this procedure followed at some uniform time in each baby’s feeding cycle ?

A suggestion of Gretchen’s: the “imitation” of facial gestures may be at the same low level of mental processing as the contagion of yawning. (This is analogous to Seymour’s point raised by a discussion in the fall in one of Marvin’s classes when he spoke of unmediated communication between afferent and efferent systems — such is a reasonable perspective if one claims that one comes to build up perceptual recognition by projecting one’s own actions into the perceived situations.) Has anyone ever done adult experiments on the contagion of yawning under experimental situations comparably controlled as is Meltzoff’s ?


3V0032.01 One month checkup 2/23/78; 1;0

Today was Peggy’s first post-natal examination. At one month, she weighs 11 lbs, 9 oz. (having left the hospital at 8,3). The two “stork bites” on her eye lids may actually be birth marks, in which case we should assume they will remain for several years. She is 22 inches long. Cranial circumference is 15 inches. Doctor Morse said we should not expect her to focus well or recognize anything until she is 6 to 8 weeks old (this in response to my remark that she always appears to be looking over a person’s shoulder). Her nightly fussing he described as her first period of coming “awake”, his positions being that babies sleep most of the time and only gradually become conscious in the sense we are when awake. He said her weight gain is positive proof that she is not colicky or ill. The first infant reaction to sickness is loss of appetite — of which she shows none. She breathes well, has a heart and a well formed pelvis. She appears to be in great shape.

His advice about the crying was to amuse her if we chose to do so, not to worry about it, perhaps to place here where there is a little noise (radio or TV) or where there are people moving about frequently — such as in the kitchen — in the kind of infant seat we have already.

Comparing her weight with the other children, Gretchen noted that at one month Miriam weighed 10,14 and Robby 11,7. Peggy, being born near her calculated due date, is, in effect, being measured a week earlier than they were (both were born about a week after the calculated due date), so her gross weight seems quite in line with Miriam’s.

Gretchen: a note about fussing – 4/23/78
By the time of the visit to the doctor, we had realized this was not a hunger problem. We simply resigned ourselves to putting up with the problem as best we could, knowing that she would go to bed after the final feeding around 11, and hoping that by three months it would be over. One night, right before her ten-week post natal checkup, I fed her around 7:30 pm and 8:30 she was sleepy, so I put her down and to my pleased surprise she slept right through until 7:30 the next morning. Since then, she has pretty well given up the last evening feeding and gone to bed for the night around 9 pm, give or take 30 minutes.


3V0040.01 Showing off Peggy at Logo; sibling reactions 3/3/78; 1;9

Peggy is gradually being introduced at the Logo Lab. On Saturday, the 25th, she, Gretchen, Robby and I trekked over to loan Robby’s camera to Jose Valente — who needed such a one for his project at Fall River. Peggy met Jose and Greg at that time. Yesterday, I took in part of a paper to Seymour — and we took the whole family. And encountered Danny, Hal, Glen, Seymour, Gordon Oro, Gary Drescher.

Within the past week Peggy has become much more alert generally and in far better control of herself that before. This appeared in several ways at once! She now travels around in her crib, she prefers to be carried on the chest and looking over the shoulder to being held by arms in the feeding position, when in the infant seat, she readily turns her head to follow peoples’ movements where last week she did not do so.

Miriam has tried playing with but is getting frustrated by having too little feedback. Robby has said that he hopes any other child we have will be female “because I like having little girls around.” I interpret this as a hope to preserve his specialness as a son. But Robby some times feels threatened/overwhelmed at the thought of so many girls and says he would prefer a brother

4/23 Gretchen made additional margin notes on Peggy not wanting to feed in the middle of the night.


3V0052.01 Peggy begins sleeping through the night 3/15/78; 1;21

Peggy is showing considerable motor development now. Starting yesterday, when left alone in her crib, she has been straining very hard to lift her head and succeeding (before collapse). By lifting her head, I mean raising it straight up by contracting her neck muscles. She gets even higher by raising herself on her arms — this permits her crown to be seen down to the eyes above the top of the crib bumper on a horizontal line.

For the first time, she rolled over on her back when put on her stomach. (She did so at least twice.) Robby took Peggy’s picture while straining to raise her neck and, after, suggested we keep a note book describing her development.

My general impression is that she now shows about the same motor development as a new born kitten (this is a kind of dumb comment — the intent of the statement is to mark how much more competent she is now than at birth).


3V0052.01 Motor development: rolls onto her back (CF. note #19) 3/17/78; 1;23

Peggy is showing considerable motor development now. Starting yesterday, when left alone in her crib, she has been straining very hard to lift her head and succeeding (before collapse). By lifting her head, I mean raising it straight up by contracting her neck muscles. She gets even higher by raising herself on her arms — this permits her crown to be seen down to the eyes above the top of the crib bumper on a horizontal line.

For the first time, she rolled over on her back when put on her stomach. (She did so at least twice.) Robby took Peggy’s picture while straining to raise her neck and, after, suggested we keep a note book describing her development.


3V0085.01 Social development: outgoing; interactions with family 4/17/78; 2;26

Peggy is considerably more outgoing than a month ago.. She lets us know we should pick her up by crying, and she wants to be picked up most of the time. Over the past week, she has become distractible from wanting to be held if anyone plays with her by making faces. An air-intaking, wide open mouth (gesture of mock surprise) is her favorite and leads directly to big smiles. She shows no laughter yet but it is beginning in squeals of delight, as yesterday while she sat in my lap. Peggy now enjoys bouncing up and down to “Ride a horse to Boston” this other rhyme: (Miriam introduced this rhyme– one like Danny Hillis did with her at Logo):
Giddy-up horsie
Go to town
Take little Peggy there.
Don’t fall down !
“Pop goes the weasel!” — with Peggy flying high in the air on the second “Pop” — frightens her a little, but she enjoys it too.
Peggy is sleeping regularly and feeding well — but she now often interrupts her meal to smile and play with Gretchen.


3V091.01 Social development: outgoing; interactions with family 4/17/78; 2;26

note on the previous fussing (reference to 2/23/78 vignette):

By the time of the visit to the doctor, we had realized this was not a hunger problem. We simply resigned ourselves to putting up with the problem as best we could, knowing she would feel better after the final feeding around 11, and hoping that by 3 months it would be over. One night, right before her 10-week post-natal checkup, I fed her around 7:30 and by 8:30 she was sleepy, so I put her down, and to my pleased surprise she slept right through until 7:30 the next morning. Since then, she has pretty well given up the last evening feeding and gone to bed for the night around 9, give or take 30 minutes.


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.


3V0091.03 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.


3V0091.04 Personality Scale 4/23/78

An article, “The Origins of Personality” in 8/70 Sci. American, presents a “temperamental quality” chart of personality characteristics (9) which the authors claim define life-long inclinations.




activity level





regular (most)

regular (some)

not distractable








no recall














3V0091.05 Grasping 4/23/78

Peggy is showing greater tendencies now to grasp — clothing while nursing, a diaper otherwise. Also to direct her hand to mouth and suck at the thumb end. When she does this with crying, she sounds as though she is trying to stifle the noise by jamming her fist in her mouth. She has also made very vague hand motions at her toy clown when it was held right in front of her at waist level.


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.


3V0094.01 Grasping: not releasing an object (4/26/78)

While Gretchen was in the bath, Peggy played in my lap. After changing her diaper, I placed her on the bed between a set of pillows and arranged around her some toys. A musical lamb (a gift from the DiSessas), a clown doll (a gift from Miriam), and a fuzzy rabbit (a gift from the Clamans). Recalling that Peggy has been grasping objects consistently, I brought her a circular rattle (a gift from the Schoemans) about five inches in diameter with 3 large lady bugs on the perimeter.
I put the rattle in Peggy’s hand, closing her fingers around a part of the perimeter to see what she would do with it. Peggy was absorbed by this thing in her hand: she looked from one lady bug to another (about half a second at each) in a circular pattern, counter clockwise; this was obvious from the gross movements of her head. After bringing her right hand to her mouth, she tried to bring her left hand, but it was encumbered by the rattle. Peggy’s tongue hung out as much as an inch while she brought the rattle under her face, but she couldn’t lift hand and rattle. After disengaging her hand from the rattle, Peggy put it straight away in her mouth. Later, she put her mouth down on the rattle.
It is not possible to judge whether this was accidental (tired neck muscles) or intentional. After doing so, she returned to her own left hand.


3V0111.01 Beginning of the “bathroom-robe incident” (5/13/78)

Peggy now chews on her fist, holding both hands to her mouth. She does not show preference for a thumb, but rather sucks the thumb end of her hand, including the index and middle fingers. She has begun to vocalize extensively, maintaining a continuous noise, frequently in conjunction with chewing on her hands…..

Over the past weeks, Peggy has become obviously very “visual,” looking and looking, trying to absorb everything with her eyes. This morning I carried her into the bathroom, where Bob was in the tub. She fixed her attention on his pajamas and robe hanging from the back of the door. When Bob called her name, she stared fixedly at the clothes, looking for his face (which was in reality only a little to the left). It took repeated calls, plus my shifting her around a bit, before she realized where Bob was. (Gretchen)

What I found most striking was Peggy’s straining to look at the top of the hook, where my head should have been. The aural evidence might have been confused by the funny echoes off the shower wall tiles. She finally found my face after, as her head sagged down, I raised my hand into her visual field, waving it, and gradually drew her gaze to my lower level in the bath tub.

A few days later: Gretchen again brought Peggy while I was on the bath. Sitting on Gretchen’s lap again and oriented to the door, Peggy saw my robe, followed the material up to the hook and back down to level, paused, and slowly turned her head left where she saw me and smiled. After she recognized me, I said , “Hi Peggy,” and waved, returning her smile.


3V0112.01 Edie Priemer and “Here comes Charlie” 05/14/78

My mother came to visit the first week in May. She and Peggy got along very well, and she managed to amuse Peggy for considerable periods by a new game, “Clap hands, Here comes Charlie,” [chanted or sung (tune vague) three times, with action at “clap hands” – now!] The last, drawn out, with hands raised. Peggy thought this was great fun. A variation involves the presence of a small, furry teddy bear, a new present from G.G.. (Bob’s grandmother). He is hidden until the “Now!” and then he pops out onto Peggy’s lap (gently, otherwise she is too startled). It appears that his name will be Charlie. Peggy makes efforts to grasp and hold Charlie, sometimes trying to nibble his ear.


3V0114.01 Feeding Cereals (5/16/78)

Peggy started solid food on 16 May — a small amount of rice and cereal prepared with expressed milk. At first she reacted as though she expected medicine of some kind; the only external material fed to her for some time has been vitamin/fluoride drops. (She has not had supplemental formula since she was almost four months; she did have it for the previous three off and on because of her nightly fussing. I knew evening is generally the low point for milk production, and was expecting possible problems, as Robby had remained unsatisfied with the dinner time feeding and had been supplemented for a month or six weeks. Peggy’s bottles were dropped when it became clear the problem was not one of hunger. Despite this initial move of distaste, she appears to enjoy the cereal and is relatively neat. My technique is to scrape it off the spoon onto the back of her upper gum, the first few spoonsful generally get eaten with no mess at all. Then some dribbles out, and Peggy also tries to put in her hand and chew on a diaper. Occasionally she even tries to grab the spoon and direct it.


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.


3V0123.01 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.”


3V0123.02 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.


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.


3V0125.02 Grasping and sucking “foreign” cloth material (5/27/78)

Over the past several days, Peggy has shown a persistent inclination to grasp cloth and put it in her mouth. It began with the diaper we keep nearby to contain her slobbering. Gretchen noted a few days ago that Peggy grasped as her drool diaper, pulled it up and stuffed a corner in her mouth. She made sucking noises and gave Gretchen a big smile indicating she was quite pleased (I am inclined to over-interpret this incident as a first joke, i.e. Peggy pretending she id feeding and smiling at Gretchen because she is not feeding). Two days ago, when sat up to burp, she persisted in grasping the material of Gretchen’s blouse and pulling it to her mouth. she now appears to prefer that to the breast and would only feed when she couldn’t reach the blouse. Yesterday while bouncing in my lap, she was very dogged in trying to grasp and pull the shirt jacket I wore. When she cold not loosen the material from my left arm, she tried the right. finally, at the table, again sitting up to burp, she first reached out for the table cloth and, failing, then tried to bring her mouth over to the table.

Chewing on cloth is not new for Peggy. for months now, Gretchen has found the sleeve of her sleeper wet in the morning. What is so striking is this apparent explosion of interest in “foreign” cloth as a new universe of suckable material.


3V0125.03 Expecting a TV game on a display (5/27/78)

Last Saturday (5/27), bob came back from Radio Shack with a TV game for the children. It has been attached to the TV in Miriam’s room. Since the weather over the weekend was quite warm, I occasionally fed Peggy in that room to enjoy the coolness produced by the air-conditioner. the children would at times be playing with the TV game. Tuesday afternoon, I took Peggy in there to nurse, and as I settled down in the chair, Peggy turned her head towards the TV (which was not on) to see if there was a game going.


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.


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

text needs to be recovered from earlier documents


3V0127.01 Grabbing and sucking an extended finger (5/29/78)

Monday (5/29) we were preparing to make our first videotape of Peggy at 18 weeks. she sat in her chair while Bob got the camera set up and observed the effects on the bedroom TV. I came over to investigate and held out a finger to Peggy. She reached for it, grasped it, and almost immediately conveyed it to her mouth where she sucked on my finger and as much of her hand as would fit.


3V0131.01 Peggy’s technique for eating cereal (a problem solved) (6/02/78)

Yesterday I observed Peggy had a fully developed technique for coping with her cereal. She sat in her chair with a fist in her mouth. when a spoonful of cereal approached, she removed her hand, keeping her mouth open wide until the food was inside. She then closed her mouth somewhat and inserted a few fingers. Sucking on the fingers performed the double function of drawing the cereal into her mouth and preventing its being pushed out by the actions of her tongue. She followed this routine until all the cereal was gone.

Two days ago, in the evening, I was nursing Peggy. At one point (after the shift from one side to the other) she was lying cradled in my arms, upper arm plucking at my clothes, blissfully sucking, but not on me ! She had all the fingers of her under-arm-hand in her mouth and seemed perfectly content.


3V0138.01 More on heads and faces (see note #9) (6/09/78)

About a week ago I carried Peggy to the bathroom while Gretchen was in the tub. Motioning to Gretchen to be quiet, I sat on the toilet seat – directly across from Gretchen’s robe hung on the door hook. Peggy scanned up to the top and down once, then started turning her head right, toward the window. She was interrupted by Gretchen calling her name and immediately rotated her head left toward the tub and voice. When a few days later, we entered the same scenario, Peggy looked first at Gretchen’s robe, then turned her head left immediately toward the tub where Gretchen sat silent (until Peggy saw her).


3V0138.02 Grasping and the Teething Jack (6/09/78)

Laying on her stomach on the floor (with a spread out sleeping bag under her), Peggy’s world of mouthable things is limited to her reach. She extended her right arm and grasped, slowly and with readily apparent difficulty, a knob on one arm of the jack. since she supported her chest and head by leaning on her arm, even though she had grasped the jack, she could not bring it to her mouth. Obviously frustrated, crying, she eventually brought her left hand over to another (the opposite) arm of the jack and grasped. She could still not pull it back to her mouth – she had it firmly grasped with her right hand !. when she let go, Peggy brought the jack toward her mouth and got a knob on one end into it, But the placement had another one poking her in the neck and this hurt her whenever she let her head droop. Poor baby. I rescued her quickly. Is this more perspicuously described by Minsky’s C-germ or is it stepwise anchoring with variation


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

text recovery needed for this vignette


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.


3V0143.01 Finger sucking game — an elaboration (6/14/78)

While videotaping Peggy at 20 Weeks, I noticed the second lower center tooth coming in.
For quite some time we have had a sort of game, wherein I would try to pounce on her hand with my mouth, going “Aumh” (a “seizing” noise) Two days ago, as I held Peggy, she waved an arm and accidentally brought her hand in contact with my mouth. I opened it and sucked gently on two of her fingers. Peggy thought this was very funny. Several times in succession she offered me her fingers to suck, each time laughing with delight. Yesterday, she expanded upon the game. After offering her fingers to be sucked, she gradually drew close to her own mouth, then firmly removed her fingers from mine and immediately put them in her mouth. But after a short time, only a second or so, she removed her fingers and again offered them to me. This sequence was repeated four or five times.


3V0148.01 Peggy rolled over (and again two days later) (6/19/78)

Peggy rolled over just now (from front to back) and I missed it ! She had awoken from a nap on the floor (sleeping bag spread out). I heard a cry, looked over to hear, and she was lying on her back.
6/21/78 Again !


3V0154.01 Movement: body awareness and relocating an object (6/25/78)

For the first time I saw Peggy rise onto her hands and knees. (Gretchen remarks she saw her do so yesterday). A second kind of mobility Peggy has gained is rotational, e.g. she flails with all four limbs and makes a little progress at turning. She not only turns in her crib now, but even puts this turning to good use. Thus, when in the past she misplaced some toy beyond her visual field, she now can move herself to re-locate it. The example sparking the observation is this: Many times the past few weeks I have seen Peggy with a teething ring grasped in her hand end in this position — lying on her stomach with her arm, hand and teething ring at her side. She most frequently dropped the teething ring and cried, bringing the hand that held it to her mouth and not locating the ring again. Today, she was able to find the teething ring after dropping it. Peggy, after bringing the hand to her mouth, raised herself up on both hands, turned a little, looked back and saw the teething ring, then reached for it. (I don;t recall that she actually picked it up.) This accidental (?) relocation is an important incident as an example of how body geometry begins to extend from the visual field.


3V0156.01 Peggy has discovered her feet (cf. note #32) (6/27/78)

Peggy not only discovered her feet, she is exploring them. Today I saw her holding a foot with one hand and playing with her toes with the other hand.


3V0158.01 We move back to Connecticut: major hiatus (6/29/78)

After Miriam was chased back on the school buys by the Gilligan’s dogs (and I was threatened by bared teeth by one of them) last Friday, we decided to move back to Connecticut. this implies we will have less time to play with Peggy and watch her for a couple weeks. A further problem is access to videotape equipment — unless I lay out the money to buy such equipment, I will have to drive to MIT to pick it up, back to Guilford to use it, back to MIT to return it and home again (that’s 4 x 150 = 600 miles /VT session.).


3V0174.01 How Peggy rolls over (7/15/78)

I saw Peggy roll over today in a way revealing of what must be the typical situation. Laying on her stomach with one arm clenched at her right shoulder, Peggy reached out with her left hand for charley, her toy bear. Charley was way beyond Peggy’s grasp. She was obviously frustrated and making incipient crying noises. While reaching again for Charley, she dug in her left foot with the leg flexed (as though trying to crawl forward — which she does not yet do )/. When she straightened her left leg, Peggy rolled over, pivoting on her right hip. Flopping on her back, Peggy appeared to be surprised, startled even, but didn’t cry, smiling instead when she recognized me. I put her back on her belly and brought Charley in reach.


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.


3V0179.02 Using her new teeth 07/20/78

Peggy now has three teeth, two in bottom and one on top. She has discovered that she can grate them together, producing a skritching sound and heaven knows what kind of sensation. She does it quite deliberately, particularly when being fed solid food, pushing her lower jaw forwards and sideways in order to center the single tooth on the pair below.


3V0179.03 Splashing in the bath 07/20/78

Whenever she has a bath, Peggy kicks vigorously and with great concentration, watching the splashing she creates.


3V0180.01 At the beach (7/22/78 )

Yesterday, Miriam, Peggy and I went down to the beach. I took Peggy to the water and held her about knee deep (her knees, not mine). When I moved her into deeper water, so that she was up to her hips, she kicked as she does in the bathtub, but without so much splashing. She enjoyed being swung back and forth so that her feet grazed the water at the bottom of the swing.


3V0180.02 Playing “Peek a boo” begins (7/22/78)

Last night dinner was late, and Peggy was already fed in her seat. As we were not paying much attention to her, she amused herself by playing with the damp washcloth I had used to clean of her face, hand, stomach, and her legs after feeding. She chewed on it and dropped it over the top of her head, holding on to it with both hands. this morning, she was playing with a diaper in similar fashion while sitting in my lap. Bob was seated about three feet away. Peggy draped the diaper over her head so that it covered her eyes. After a few seconds, she grasped the diaper with both hands and lowered it to neck level, then looked at Bob and laughed. She did this three or four times in succession – a genuine game of peek a boo all on her own. Bob joined the game by asking “Where’s Peggy?” when she covered her eyes, and crying “There she is!” when she removed the diaper.


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.


3V0180.04 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).