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Archive with last of tag-string Y2

3V0366.1

3V0366.01 Knowing What Peggy Wants 01/23/79

KNOWING WHAT PEGGY WANTS — Peggy says /∂aet/ and it’s clear she wants something, but it is not clear to us. She says /∂aet/ so much, we might suspect she doesn’t want any particular thing but merely enjoys pointing, talking, and being carried around. Such is not the case at all.

I see many of Peggy’s new tantrums deriving from our not understanding what she wants. An incident at lunch today provides a clear example. After feeding, Peggy’s tray was its usual mess. When she complained and carried on, Gretchen picked up Peggy and gave her some orange juice at which she had pointed and spoken of. Now Peggy started /∂aet/-ing in earnest, many times, with increasing intensity. Gretchen offered Peggy a cookie — her favorite food — but Peggy would have none of it. When she seemed to be pointing in the general direction of her tray, Gretchen held her within reach of it. From the clutter there, Peggy picked out a small piece of toast. She did so immediately, directly, and with precision. I am certain Peggy wanted THAT bit of food before she was near the tray at all.

RELEVANCE — How absolutely useful to Peggy would be learning names. How useful to us as well, specifically in restoring relative calm and quiet at meal time especially, would be Peggy’s learning naming or even some other specification procedure — e.g. we could touch things and she indicate whether it was what she wanted or not.
It has not previously been so clear how great a gap there is between Peggy’s specific desires and her inability to specify what she wants.

3V0368.2

3V0368.02 Putting on and putting in are distinguished (1/25/79)

Relevance: These observations document that Peggy has now distinguished putting-on from putting-in. I believe further, that they trace Peggy’s experience through the events in which putting-on developed. The sequence is first, climbing, i.e. putting oneself on (at least getting on); drawing back from an object onto which one might not get if not so risky; putting-on other things as the put-on-able object.

Reflecting further: where might this lead ? This stool is for Peggy literally a “body-support-structure” –ie it is a thing capable of supporting her body. She should be able to dissociate the idea of her body from the support structure, but it will probably be quite a while before she can decompose its arches into legs and a span. However, she may soon discover that some put-on-able objects have the equivalent of a hollow, are thus put-in-able as well, just as cups are — her interest in side insertion should lead to that directly, Will she be surprised to find the putting-in one side may eventuate in coming out the other ? It is clear that the stool and perhaps a solid equivalent should enter our next video tape session.

3V0369.1

3V0369.01 More putting on: multiple objects (1/26/79)

I usually sit working in the midst of clutter, a table on one side, a tall stool on the other. When sitting in my lap, as this morning, Peggy points here and there, say /thaet//thaet/, thus she comes in possession of my pipe, my pens or whatever else catches her eye within my reach. Today, sitting on my lap. the stool nearby, Peggy played with a handful of pens. She picked one out, reached over and took it up. Peggy tried a different pen. When it remained on the clip-board (on top of the stool), she added a second pen and then a third. She continued placing and retrieving pens for several minutes.

3V0370.1

3V0370.01 A cold & Shampoo cocktail (1/27/79)

Peggy has shown signs of an oncoming cold for more than a day. A running nose, coughing, difficulty sleeping, a fever of 101 degrees this morning — but more trouble was coming. While alone in her crib, during nap time, she apparently reached out to the sink and captured a bottle of Baby Shampoo. Gretchen found it in the crib with the cap off. Peggy had bubbles around her mouth, but it wasn’t possible to tell how much, if any, shampoo she had drunk. The cap was missing; Gretchen was first fearful that Peggy had swallowed it and was quite relieved to find it in a corner, under Miriam’s bed. The pediatrician speculated that Peggy had not drunk much shampoo and that if she had it would not have poisoned her — but since the label warned to keep it from children and we had some ipecac available, she recommended we induce vomiting as a cautious response. Poor baby.

1/28/79 – There appears to be no obvious consequences from Peggy’s trial of yesterday. Her voice is gone – or what there is, is hoarse, but her spirits are definitely improved and her temperature is normal again.

3V0371.1

3V0371.01 Three words: “I want that”. A well formed English sentence; progressive structuration 1/28/79

THREE WORDS — When Peggy has requested this or that, a common response has been the question “You want that?” If we see her smile when we are pointing to a specific object, we give it to her. Today at lunch, trying to communicate to her obtuse parents that she wanted a cookie, Peggy pointed to the counter where they are normally kept (through a table full of other possible desiderata) and repeated with pointed and increasing insistence /ae/aen/∂aet/, the central syllable at a rising tone and stressed.

RELEVANCE — Peggy now owns three verbal forms for saying the same thing. /∂aet/, /hae/∂aet/, and /ae/aen/∂aet/. She uses them to express her desire for some object to other people. She knows, and expects others to know, that these signifiers express her desire. She knows what they are FOR; and she uses them interchangeably — the distinction of impute to her usage (to the extent they are not absolutely interchangeable) is that the more sounds she says, the more emphatic is the pronouncement.

We hear three words in what Peggy utters. I make no claim or implication that Peggy understands words at all. However, what is most striking in this last phrase is that Peggy has uttered (albeit inarticulately) a well formed English sentence with terms for subject, verb, and object. Of course, she does not know THAT. The next development to be expected is her conjunction of naming with this primitive verbal object (to which she relates much as we adults to an unanalyzed idiom), probably in some such sequence as the following (based on the use of naming for further specification and the deletion of the “unnecessary” pronoun /∂aet/.
/object-name/…/ae/aen/∂aet/object-name/…–>> /ae/aen/∂aet/object-name/
/ae/aen/∂aet/object-name/…–>> /ae/aen/object-name/
i.e. the development of structure is progressive discrimination, conjunction, and simplification.

3V0374.1

3V0374.01 Bad cold; general comments late in January 1979; (nominal date 1/31/79 added)

Late January — a bad cold. Peggy has been sick for a week and more. vomiting, diarrhea, a low fever, her cries even had to make do with a hoarse little voice. she slept a lot. Videotape session P53 fell under the cloud of Peggy’s cold. The pediatricians advised in several calls that they could do nothing to help her; both she and we had to bear her symptoms.

After the vomiting went on for a few days, it occurred to me that Peggy might also be allergic to some of her foods. She had begun, with the cold, drinking large quantities of orange juice. We stopped offering her that juice and her vomiting ceased. (This may, of course, be no more than a coincidence.)

Peggy’s voice came back by Saturday, 2/3, but she still seems to be needing longer naps than we had become accustomed to. Session P5 (2/5/79) was also a short one (note P54 is split on two tapes: P53 and TIS 76).

3V0376.1

3V0376.01 Example of insensitivity to obvious features of objects (2/2/79)

Peggy sits in my lap, often playing with my pipe. Today we sat near my very small table with its clutter of writing implements. Peg took one pen and began poking it into the pipe bowl. Casting her eyes over the clutter, she spied a clear plastic ruler and indicated she wanted it. The width of the ruler is greater than that of the pipe bowl. Peg was puzzled as she kept trying to stuff the ruler end in the bowl. She tried again with the pen. It succeeded but the ruler failed once again and she stopped trying.

Relevance: simple example of her assimilating the ruler to her ‘rod’ scheme and running into trouble.

3V0377.1

3V0377.01 Neat phenomena and instruction: An Ale Bottle — (2/03/79)

Peggy has long had the habit of carrying ale bottle. We separate glass trash for recycling and Peggy has long been able to careen over in her walker, select one she likes, and continue charging about the ground floor waving her prize. She usually puts various parts of the bottle in her mouth at various times.

After lunch today, Peggy sat in my lap. As she asked for that or that or that from my table, finally for an empty ale bottle, I held it off from her long enough to make it sound by blowing across the mouth of the bottle. Peggy was amazed and delighted. After becoming sure that the sound came from the bottle when I held it to my mouth, Peggy demanded it from me. She took the bottle to her mouth and tried to make it sound; he best attempt was a humming with her mouth over the bottle opening. This should be no surprise. Peggy;s brother and sister also had trouble with this trick until they were much older.

Relevance: another homely example – this time of Peggy trying to do something that fascinates her but is clearly beyond her capability.

Note: 6/14/2012: looks like a dating / sequence error in Vignette / file name

3V0380.1

3V0380.01 Need for specificity expands repertoire of signifiers 2/6/79

Peggy drives [us] to distraction. A few weeks ago when her talk was all /[th]aet/[th]aet/ and her pointing restricted to pictures, the talk was endurable, but now that it is coupled with specific objectives Gretchen and I are subject to streams of /[th]aet/ and /hae/[th]aet/ and [WANT THAT]. Peggy clearly knows what she wants; when we offer her something not her desire she turns away. This move expresses her rejection and exacerbates our frustration. She turns back with intensified commands: /hae/[th]aet/- hae/[th]aet/. WHAT does she want?

We ALL need to have Peggy discover the use of names. She appears to have begun making distinctions in her specification of things./[th]aet/ is now interlaced with /zit/. I believe her use of /zit/ derives directly from our questioning as we search for what she wants. “Is it this?…Is this it?” (/iz/[th]is/it/ on repetition –> /iz/[th]i/zit/). The distinction (probably to be a transient one) is that Peggy now applies /zit/ to nearby things and /[th]aet/ to those far away. (Note that we most frequently ask “Is this it?” about objects within our reach on the table; since her arrowroot cookies are kept on a remote counter, they are rarely touched when we ask, “Is this it?”)

3V0380.2

3V0380.02 Prosodic features dominate sounds in meaning 2/6/79

Peggy’s name — At supper this [evening] Gretchen and I discussed with Robby what words Peggy knew. The question arose when Robby asserted that surely she knew her name. I argued that her response when I said “Peggy” was to the prosodic features and not to the name as such. I said “Peggy” in the tone in which I censure our dog Scurry — and Peggy did not respond. I asked Robby to call her using any other name. He tried “Murgatroyd”; Peggy looked at him and smiled. Going further, I called “bazz fazz”. Peggy turned again. I stopped his going further.

3V0384.1

3V0384.01 More verbal specificity; productive uses of signifiers 2/10/79

Returning from a three day trip to Boston, I have Peggy in my lap more than usual. At one point, she indicated she wanted Miriam’s belt which lay near by on the floor: /zIt//zIt/. I gave it to her. Peggy chewed it over, and because I figured she might poke herself with the buckle closer (the rod going through the holes in the leather), I fastened the buckle. Peggy took the loop and put it behind her head, then she put it over her head [to] bring it down to her neck.

Casting the belt aside eventually, she pointed to a toy on the floor: /zIt/ /zIt/. I got for her the Snoopy dog (a pull-behind noise maker). Peggy pointed at the dog’s eye — and then at the buckle on its collar. It looks quite similar to the larger one on the belt she had just cast away. When did Peggy notice the similarity? Was it not when she put the belt around her neck as a collar? (The [dog] had been lying upside down; I believe the collar was not visible when Peggy showed she wanted the dog.)

Peggy next turned her attention to my writing table. The clutter thereon demands specific reference. She began /zit/ and kept it up while I offered her first one object, then another. She wanted neither one pipe stem nor the other. After three or four trials she burst out: /thaet//iz//zit/. (The unaccented syllable iz may have been no more than a falling tone on /thaet/.) I turned to Gretchen across the room. “Did you hear that? Did you hear her say ‘That is it’?” Gretchen responded, “That’s what I heard her say.”

Relevance — I judge this last observation to be an important one precisely because it shows Peggy assembling a new grammatical form, i.e. we interpret the utterance as [THAT IS IT]; its genesis is probably an intensive agglomeration of signifiers, i.e. /thaet/ and /zIt/. When she learns some names, we will expect this emphatic agglomeration to produce such phrases as /pen//zIt/, /paip//zIt/, and /thaet//dog/.

3V0384.2

3V0384.02 Usage extension; second person agent of imperative 2/10/79

Peggy and I have passed pipe stems back and forth for quite a while. Long ago we began the giving game. That is, when she offered a pipe stem (or some other object to me) I would take it, say “Thank you” and return it with the statement “Here.” At times Peggy has wanted me to take a pipe stem from her when I have been reluctant (recall her still on-going cold); in such cases, she has tried to simply push the pipe stem end into my mouth.

Peggy has used /hae/[th]aet/ as an emphatic form meaning “I want to have that.” She has also used it to mean “I have that.” Sitting in my lap today, she took a pipe stem and held it out to me. /hae/[th]aet/ she said in a commanding voice. (The declarative “I have that” has a different, lower level of stress.) Here the extension of this imperative usage is from the implicit agent being Peggy to its being me — the person spoken to.

3V0384.3

3V0384.03 Salience of her name in her interpretations; vocative “dada” 2/10/79

Peggy will respond to a voice calling with an intonation like that used in calling her name. Evidence of her understanding names can be [of] other sorts. The rare example from P53 [Egg Peggy] is one strong sign that her own name is a significant potential meaning for her to which she will try to fit parts of an utterance she is trying to understand. A second strong point of evidence is Peggy’s use (in the future, if not convincingly yet) of other’s names. The closest approach so far was in this incident today.

Gretchen returned from a downtown trip. She brought in Peggy and left her sitting on the floor in the infant seat while she returned to close the door. Peggy was most unhappy in the seat and even more so to be abandoned. As I walked across the room before her she cried out /dae/dae/ – /dae/dae/ — and smiled broadly when I turned to her.

3V0385.1

3V0385.01 Peggy’s nose; two element phrase from idiom variation 2/11/79

Peggy sat on my lap, and Miriam, feeling left out, demanded the same privilege. Gretchen has been naming face parts with Peggy for months and Peggy cooperates by reaching out to touch her nose when Gretchen asks, “Where’s my nose?” Miriam asked, “Peggy, where’s my nose?” Her use of “Peggy” was a calling and the word nose was emphasized. Miriam continued, after Peggy’s response, “Where’s Daddy’s nose?” Peggy again touched Miriam’s nose. Miriam said, “No!” and pointing at my face, said, “Daddy’s nose.” Miriam next asked, “Where’s Peggy’s nose?” When Peggy pointed to Miriam’s face, she said, “No. That’s my nose. Where’s Peggy’s nose?” Peggy turn to me and reached out an finger to me. “No. That’s Daddy’s nose.” Miriam continued, “Where’s Peggy’s nose?” Peggy then brought up her hand to her own nose, and Miriam gave her a hug and praised her discovery of her own nose.

Relevance — This may or may not be Peggy’s “discovery of her own nose” (I tend to doubt it is). What I see important in this incident is an example of a process of meaning refinement which requires the joint handling by Peggy of two words, one of which is treated by the speaker as variable, i.e. what Peggy handles as an idiomatic utterance is required to be interpreted as a two- element phrase. The guidance Peggy receives in this setting, both explicit and implicit (the latter by using new terms ‘Daddy’ and ‘Peggy’ with which she is very familiar) is so strong as to be instruction. The requirement for analyzing the idiom to parts and varying one is a very primitive introduction of structure, an impressing of structure upon an idiom. Peggy’s trial and error process of interpreting “Where’s Peggy’s nose?” exemplifies how the differentiation of meaning and the development of structure comprehension is an empirical learning.

3V0387.1

3V0387.01 Peggy varying elements of a transient game; like phrases 2/13/79

Wooba wooba — Peggy hates to have her face washed or her nose wiped. But she does like to take things out of my shirt pockets. Her usual pocket-picking targets are pens or pipe stems. Today, with my having two shirt pockets, she discovered a handkerchief in the second (I was prepared because her extended cold has left her nose frequently run[ny]). I was not happy when Peggy extracted the hanky and held it high. I took it from her, rubbed her mouth and nose, exclaiming ‘wooba wooba’ and returned the hanky to my pocket. Peggy was delighted. A new game! She again extracted the hanky, and the sequence was re-run about ten times, at which point I gave up. Peggy took the handkerchief. When I failed to respond, she looked puzzled at first, then drew the hanky up to her nose with a big smile. I laughed and replaced the hanky in my pocket. Peggy once more extracted the hanky. When I did nothing, she lifted the hanky and put it against my mouth.

Relevance — After the incident of “Peggy’s nose”, I find this little story striking testimony to the coherence of the kinds of actions and transformations of meaning of which Peggy is now capable. It was Peggy’s idea to generalize her game (to keep it going) by varying the agent; it was her idea to generalize immediately the patient of the action (when she wiped my nose) although this was not required to keep the game going.

3V0388.1

3V0388.01 Hiding from sight and relocating things (2/14/79)

For weeks now, when playing with objects taken from my pockets or my writing table, Peggy has delighted in hiding them. her characteristic move is to put a pen, for example, underneath her leg on the seat cushion or, the usual case since she is on my lap, pushing the pen between the seat cushions or between my body and the chair. Typically, she is not content until that object is out of sight. When this is the case, she turns away and then returns and seeks the object where she had hidden it.

As she is now becoming more mobile, she has taken to hiding things (small objects she can pick up) in any places difficult for her to see into. when my pens disappear, I have to look in the trash can, in dresser drawers left ajar, around the corners of furniture, and under such pieces.

3V0398.1

3V0398.01 Shaping and imitation (2/24/79)

Perhaps two weeks ago, Peggy had a cookie. In the process of consumption, a rather large piece was broken off and dropped. I retrieved it for her and handed it back.
she took this piece in her free hand and immediately tried to match it to the main body of the cookie in her other, like someone doing a puzzle. Eating, however, was her main interest after a few seconds.

Imitation: about the same time, Peggy had found a small bell tied with yellow yarn. This intrigued her. I wanted to show her how it rang, but she would not yield it to me. I took her arm by the upper part and elbow and gently shook her whole arm. The bell jingled (somewhat dully, since her hand was wrapped around the bell). When I let go, she looked at me, then at the bell in her hand. Then she deliberately raised her hand and shook the bell, producing a tingling again, to her delight.

3V0398.2

3V0398.02 Identifying toys and pictures of foxes; classification possible insight;
(nominal date 2/28/79 added)

Late February – Foxes: (a reconstruction) Before videotape session P57 (a day or two before) Gretchen sat with Peggy on the couch in the living room. Gretchen was ‘reading’ Baby Animals. Peggy pointed at the Fox on the cover and said [that that]. Gretchen responded, “That’s a fox, Peggy, a fox.” Peggy turned and pointed to the picture of Vixen and pup and on turn, to the Fox painting. In both cases, Gretchen confirmed her judgment, “Yes Peggy, that’s a fox too.”`

3V0398.3

3V0398.03 First introduction to pictures of herself. (3/01/79)

Late February – Pictures and Names (a reconstruction) Carrying Peggy back from the balcony, when she pointed to some pictures and requested them, I turned Peggy to pictures of her hanging above the balcony entry. I was trying to distract her attention to pictures beyond her easy reach as mine). That is the place where pictures of Peggy are hung. “See, that’s a picture of Peggy. That’s you, Peggy.” Here, I pointed to her after — both pictures where she, in her familiar robe, is held on her mother’s lap. From being cranky and demanding, Peggy brightened immediately. My impression was that she understood that picture was of her. (It is not at all clear whether she assumes all baby pictures are pictures of her or not — but most of the baby pictures in my room are of Robby and Miriam.)

We continued out into the hallway. Stopping at the hall mirror, I said. “Peggy, see, there’s Peggy.”

Relevance: I note this incident as a possible precursor in kind (though I do not claim this is, in fact) of Peggy’s catching on in an articulated way to the representative character of pictures. (I’m not sure what I mean by this.)

3V0403.1

3V0403.01 “dog” used as a verbal label for Scurry (3/01/79)

Peggy was downstairs in the kitchen with Gretchen. I sought a book
from our shelves on the balcony of the living room. Peggy entered
downstairs and crawled over to the sliding glass doors. (These are a
window on the world at her level. For several weeks she has been
looking over the porch to the woods and playing peek-a-boo and put-
over-my-head with the curtains.) Peggy was “alone”, i.e. she did not see
me on the balcony and I watched from the time she entered. Scurry
barked (she was tied to a tree at the woods’ edge). Peggy pointed to
her and said /dog/ i.e. [DOG]. She did not repeat it.

Relevance — Peggy clearly used /dog/ as a verbal label, a name, for
Scurry. Her use shows no communicative intent to any other person.
Gretchen informs me she has been referring to Scurry as a “dog”, i.e.
whenever Peggy points at her, Gretchen typically says, “That’s Scurry.
She’s a dog.”

3V0410.1

3V0410.01 Activity –> social game; flexible roles and naming things (03/08/79)

Jigging — Jumping up and down rapidly, i.e. bending at the knees while
holding on to something, has been one of Peggy’s favorite actions since
she became able to stand. She does that by herself at the couch. She
jumps up and down in my lap when I play chop-sticks at the piano. I
often play Irish instrumental music on records. When I do, Peggy
enjoys my dancing around with her, bouncing her up and down.

One night at supper, such jigs were playing in the background. Peggy
started bouncing in her seat and waved both arms at once. She looked
at me. I imitated her gesture. She enjoyed that imitation tremendously
and now both older children imitate her flapping arms. This gesture
(which she will still begin spontaneously when she hears a favorite jig
start) split off from the activity as a content for the imitative game.

This evening at supper, [as] Peggy led Robby and Miriam in her jigging, I
told the older children to stop flapping (to make the scene less like
bedlam). Miriam, holding both hands aloft, began opening and closing
her hands. Peggy, seeing neither child following her lead, noticed
Miriam’s activity and began imitating it. Subsequently, I asked both
older children to hold up one arm instead of two. Peggy did not imitate
the one arm form.

Relevance — This set of incidents records how an expression of simple
activity boils over into a social interchange/game. Peggy’s flexibility of
roles, with quick shift from leader to follower and back, is what I note
here. It may be that just this sort of role reversal is implicated in
learning names of things when someone else specifies the name.

3V0412.1

3V0412.01 Putting-on; (3/10/79)

Peggy has definitely begun putting objects on “tables”, i.e. any flat
surface bounded and raised. The evidence of intention is her repeating
the action. For example, she spent a long time (10 minutes or so) with
Miriam’s boots and the checker table, putting on one, then both, then
taking them off.

She also sat beside a pile of books at my chair, placing all the objects in
her reach on top of the dictionary; her hair brush, a rolling toy, some
other random objects she played with that day.

3V0413.1

3V0413.01 Change of fashion in Peggy’s favored sounds; cups, closing(3/11/79)

About three weeks ago “Doit” [do-it?] replaced “ha zat” (have that) and
“zat …zat…zat” as the most frequently used phrase in Peggy’s speech.
For a while the older phrases disappeared completely, then returned….

Ten days or so ago, Peggy went to take a nap about 5 pm, and slept
through until 2:30 am. Naturally she was wide awake and fresh, so I
took her down stairs and fed her a container of yogurt. Part way
through, she refused the spoon, pointing to the lid and saying “that,
that, that.” When I gave her the lid she began playing with it and
resumed eating the yogurt. (She does this frequently, sometimes not
eating at all until she obtains the lid.) She then started replacing the lid
on the container, at first in between my dipping out a spoonful, then
while the spoon was still inside. When the container was empty, she
played with it also, putting the lid on and lifting the container up with
both hands. At one point she brought it to her mouth like a cup. Tiring
of this, she bobbed her head forward to peer up at me, and laughed
delightedly when I imitated her. She repeated the action many times to
provoke my response.

At about the same time, she picked up her cup to drink. By chance the
drinking spout was on the upper edge. Previously I have always seen
her try to drink from the spout anyway, but this time she rotated the
cup by bringing her left hand over to the right and the right over to
the left, and drank in that contorted position. She also delights in
pouring some milk out onto the tray of the high chair, so she can
smack the puddle with her hand. Gretchen.

3V0415.1

3V0415.01 Functional classification: two examples, one in error (3/13/79)

Peggy has begun to classify objects by what she knows their use to be.
Some examples are equivocal, though I remain convinced of their
interpretation. For example, Peggy has been “brushing” her hair. This
could be from having her hair brushed, from seeing Miriam brush her
hair, or it could be her use of the object according to a functional
definition of what it is for. A further complication, with a hair brush, is
that Peggy passes so many things behind her neck, it is hard to be
certain that she is really “brushing.” (The best evidence is that she
repeatedly brushes her hair even if she eventually passes the brush
behind her neck.)

There is less certainty about the second example, depending as it does
on an incorrect assimilation, Peggy hates to have her nails cut. She
carries on terribly. She sat in my lap demanding objects from my table.
One of the first that came to her hand was a pair of tweezers. Peggy
held one end and touched the other to each of the toes on one foot in
succession. (The day before, she had had her nails clipped.) I infer
that Peggy saw the tweezers as a nail clipper (both are of the same
length and have a small set of jaws at the end). The functional
classification it witnessed by her application of the tweezers.

3V0417.1

3V0417.01 Putting-in with no pockets! insensitive to the “obvious” (3/15/79)

After many games of “wooba wooba”, pockets still confuse Peggy.
Equally, they interest her. When my shirt pockets have the flaps tucked
in, she can occasionally get enough of a hanky in for it to stay in place.
Similarly, she succeeds more or less well getting my pipe stems or pens
(even two at a time) into my pocket. With the flap down, but not
buttoned, she fails. When Peggy fails to insert an object in a pocket,
she tries a second time, holding the object in place and (it seems)
pressing slightly or holding long. This response applies even when I
have no pockets. In one case, I wore a sweater about the same color as
my green shirt and , when we played with a hanky, Peggy tried putting it
into a non-existent pocket in the sweater.

Peggy tries putting objects, especially pens, into her “pockets.” Her
infant clothes have none, but whenever she sits and the material
puckers up between sets of snaps, she has a pocket which she pokes
about in.

3V0423.1

3V0423.01 Trying to stick a magnet to the butcher block (3/21/79)

Peggy had a small magnet, from the varied collection that normally are
holding things on the refrigerator door. She approached the smooth
side of the butcher block and held up the magnet to the surface. It did
not hold, of course. She picked it up and very carefully placed it on
the wood again. I do not know if she was trying to make it stick with
pressure, or just attempting to make sure that the magnet was in good
position before she let it go.

3V0426.1

3V0426.01 Expression: verbal imitation (3/24/79)

Peggy was very crabby this evening before dinner. At one point Robby
got out some cheese and was sitting at the table with it. Peggy walked
toward him, crying insistently. I told Robby to offer her a piece of
cheese, and he did so. As she reached for it, Peggy said, [OH BOY
CHEESE]!

At dinner, I mentioned something about cauliflower, and Peggy echoed
[CAULI…]

3V0429.1

3V0429.01 Stair gate: extends her horizon. (3/27/79)

We have long had a stair gate at the bottom of the flight to our second
storey. I put it up at first to keep Scurry downstairs (for Miriam’s
sake) but knew also that we want to keep Peggy from climbing
unattended. While I have worked at my thesis, all too frequently
Gretchen has left Peggy in our bedroom, the door closing her in with
me while she is washing laundry and so forth. Gretchen’s purpose was
clearly to prevent Peggy falling from the top of the stair flight down.
finally, I mounted a second baby gate at the stair top.

The effect of the gate for Peggy has been a vast widening of her
accessible horizon. Now no longer [confined] to my bedroom, she wanders about
the second storey — out in the hall, into the bathroom, into the water
closet, into the room she shares with Miriam — and returns with booty
from her journeys. the only problem so far from her new found
freedom was a scare that she was sick because of eating some soap
(this possibility was pure speculation). Not so. Peggy has been feeling
out of sorts for a few days with a low fever — probably from a minor
cold.

3V0432.1

3V0432.01 First example of symbolic thought: “doll-up” for herself (3/30/79)

Miriam has been making fantastic figures by cutting out paper. She
displays them by taping them up below my mantle motto at the second
story fireplace. Peggy caught sight of them and wanted to ‘see’ them.
She indicates this by a high pitched noise of delight //\/ and pointing,
with as many repetitions as necessary. When I carried her up to the
gallery of cutouts, Peggy was especially interest[ed] in the cutout of a
small person with a bow in her hair (the other figures appeared to be
more like hairy critters from some Dr. Seuss book). I gave it to her.
For some time, 2 days, Peggy has wandered about with the cutout doll
in her hand, dropping and neglecting it for a while but later picking it
up again.

Many times, Peggy has brought the cutout doll to me, made her
‘delight’ noise, and set [it] on my knee. My typical response has been
to pick it up, examine it, make some comment and hand it back to her.
Often this has angered or frustrated Peggy. I finally understood when
she began repeating this sequence with Foxy. (Here too my response
was to pick it up, pet it and give it back.) Peggy wanted me to pick her
up; she was using favorite objects to represent herself in
communicating to me what she wanted.

How do I know that’s true? I can’t be certain. Even with the difference
between her delight and frustration, [it] is not an adequate sign because
[she] would be happy to be picked up even if it were only my idea and
not hers. Claiming that Peggy uses a token for herself is thus
imputation — but an important one.

Relevance — If my interpretation is correct, this is the first incident
wherein I have witnessed symbolic thought. It is distinct from simple
naming in that here one object stands for and is operated on as a
representative of the referent. If Peggy is thinking symbolically NOW,
the use of language when it emerges later will be seen as an extension
of symbolic relations already in place.

3V0432.2

3V0432.02 Foxy Robin Hood: classification. (3/30/79)

Peggy has been playing much of late with Miriam’s stuffed toy fox,
called “Foxy.” Peggy carries the toy about by the ear, pets it as she tries
to do with Scurry. (Has she compared it yet to our pictures in the living
room ? I’m not certain.) Yesterday Peggy sat on the floor in front of
her dresser (which is in my bedroom because of Miriam’s allergies)
pointing to a decal on the bottom drawer, in an attempt to point it out
to Miriam. Today it became clear why. The decal is one of Robin Hood
— but the picture is of a Red Fox in a green suit with a bow and arrow.
Peggy hauled Foxy over to the dresser. then talking only to herself but
with the same delighted tones of yesterday’s talk with Miriam, Peggy
pointed first at Robin then at Foxy, then repeated her pointing and her
exclamations.

3V0432.3

3V0432.03 Problem solving: bad bugs; insensitivity to the “obvious” (3/30/79)

Problem solving: bad bugs; insensitivity to the “obvious” (3/30/79) |
One of those many times she has sat in my lap, Peggy began trying to
uncap pens. (She has seen me put the cap on firmly many times, so
that when she put them in my pockets or took them out she would not
get ink all over). she succeeded with various bic pens and today she
tackled a black (?) Flash pen. This plastic pen has a metal ring and a
pocket clip and a white/gray circle at the top of the cap on the end.
Peggy succeeded in separating the cap from the pen. I put the cap back
on to avoid our both getting covered with black ink. Peggy removed
the cap. she began then trying to replace the cap, holding the pen in
her right hand and the cap in her left.

Peggy had a lot of trouble. She managed quite well inserting the pen in
the cap hole. BUT without good alignment, the pen would not go in
very far. She pressed harder. She removed the end and tried again.
After several tries, her persistence coupled with luck to permit the pen
insertion. She repeated the action five to ten times, refining her action
so that he re-insertions were quicker and more sure than the original
process. Somehow, the pen and the cap changed hands.

Peggy tried capping the pen with the cap in her right hand. She could
not do it. The reason is more surprising than the fact. The cap had
been turned around and she persisted in trying to insert the pen
through the white circle on the top of the cap. Can she not, does she
not distinguish a hole (whose appearance is black and round) from that
decorative circle (whose appearance is white and round)? The other
obvious common feature is that both are on the end of a cylinder.
If this is a discrimination failure, is the problem some non-salience of
color ? (Hard to believe.) Is it the complexity of three intersecting
features (being round, on a cylinder, and of different colors) ?
Perhaps it is not a discrimination failure but one of ignorance, i.e.
Peggy does not know that a covered hole prohibits insertion.

3V0434.1

3V0434.01 Non-standard use of name ‘bird’ (04/01/79)

We have a “make-it/bake-it” cardinal hanging high on the dining room
window. Peggy is much interested in it, and Gretchen often informs her
that it is a bird. Peggy’s verbal imitations are pretty good. Sometimes
sound turns out more like /b/\p/ or /b/\d/, but it’s quite easy to
distinguish from her other vocalizations. Peggy has begun applying that
label to other things, the outstanding example of which is her pointing
to some Chinese watercolors high on our bedroom wall and repeating
“bird.” One picture is of yellow chrysanthemums and blue butterflies;
the second might be red-bud flowers and bees.

Importance — Peggy applies the label “bird” to “colorful-things-high-
up.” It is not at all clear that she would so name a living bird. Let’s
hope we see.

3V0440.1

3V0440.01 A declarative sentence <[That's Scurry. That's it.]> (04/07/79)

Scurry looms large in Peggy’s world. She knows her name is Scurry; she
thinks of the fox pictures as dog pictures (especially note the
videotape where she first makes that identification). Today Gretchen
asked me, “Bob, did you hear that?” (I hadn’t.) “Peggy said, ‘That’s
Scurry.'” I remarked that it would be nice if it were true, if that’s what
she had said and meant. Here Scurry obliged by walking into the room.
Peggy pointed and said [That’s Scurry. That’s it.]

Importance — This use appears to be an elaboration of Peggy’s
imperative /[th]aet/ and /hae(v)[th]aet/ into declarative use.

3V0442.1

3V0442.01 Verbal imitation of a “word to remember”: <[Stool]> (4/9/79)

Peggy’s verbal imitation is quite well developed. An everyday example.
I sat in my chair with a cup of coffee on a high stool beside it. Peggy
came along and started to shake the stool. “No, no, Peggy, don’t touch
the stool!” “Stool,” Peggy said to herself and toddled off.

3V0444.1

3V0444.01 Playing with Scurry; tool, weapons, chimps, and Peggy (4/11/79)

After Peggy became more skilled at toddling around, she and Scurry
have delighted in chasing each other about the house. Scurry bounces
up and down, changes direction running off, hides under the chairs and
peers out. Peggy toddles about, chortling gleefully, sometimes chasing
Scurry, sometimes patting her (the petting is very hard). The latest
prop introduced to this play is a yard stick. Peggy holds one end and
chases Scurry with the other. With such an end grip, the yardsticks’
other end stays on the floor as Peggy chases Scurry who leaps nimbly
over the impediment.

When Peggy gets to use a different grip, she is dangerous. Holding the
yardstick at mid-point and “patting” Scurry with it, or “chasing” her
with it, has given the dog a few bad whacks which she seems to accept
without anger.

3V0453.1

3V0453.01 A question: [What that is ?] interior dialogue: (4/20/79)

Peggy toddles around the bedroom-study while Gretchen and I work on
the thesis. Today, she sat by the fireplace in a pile of dried leaves and
wood chips, she spoke to herself [what that is ?] as she patted a “dust
mop” then gave her own answer [broom].
Importance: a number of points revolve around this performance.
1. the non-standard word order is a puzzle. when we ask Peggy the
names of things, we ask “what’s that ?” It is striking that she
introduces a copula in place of recognizing its contraction in “what’s”
If she hears “what that from us. why should she add “is” ?

2. She could have said something else, which I mistook for [what that
is?] Yes. She could have said [what that it.] – a construction similar to
[that’s scurry. That’s it.] Perhaps something else.

3. Here we have an example surfacing of interior monologue in a query
format — perhaps interior dialogue would be a better term.

3V0454.1

3V0454.01 Functional Classification: hairbrush, handkerchief; too far (4/21/79)

It’s clear that Peggy knows what certain things are “for.” The first clear
example was her use of a hairbrush. The second and most pervasive,
was (and continues to be) her use of “handkerchiefs.” She and I have
played much with hankies — they are the main prop in the “wooba
wooba” game and continues to be Peggy’s most favorite object for
picking out of my shirt pockets. At this time, Peggy began to retrieve a
hanky from my pocket then bring to her nose and wipe it across or
press it against her face. Subsequently, she would wipe my nose with
the hanky (this sort of play was captured in videotape near the time of
its beginning.)

Since late April, Peggy has extended her functional definition of hanky
to include anything that can be so used. For example, Peggy takes the
tea towel off the handle of the refrigerator door and so uses it.
Similarly with a damp face cloth — after wiping her hands and face, we
have had the damp cloth taken away (by her). Peggy then used it for
“blowing her nose.”

3V0465.1

3V0465.01 “Have Peggy”: adults adjust speech to her understanding (5/early/79)

Peggy has wanted to be picked up a lot lately. Her way of indicating this
is very annoying — she typically comes to where Gretchen is, grabs
Gretchen’s pants leg, and wails. Could we get her to say ‘Up’? No.
Gretchen began saying “Have Peggy?” and continues doing so, even
though this has not inspired Peggy to say what she wants.

Importance — this documents the way we change our speech to try
communicating so that Peggy can understand. There is no implication,
of course, that such speech changes make any difference.

3V0472.1

3V0472.01 Doing “Headstands” (5/9/79)

Once she started toddling about, Peggy began “headstands,” i.e. with
her feet firmly planted wide apart, she brings her head and hands down
to the floor and peers between her legs. Peggy has done this several
times when I was nearby and, catching my eye, laughed gleefully as if
this were some sort of a joke (Perhaps in the sense that peek-a-boo is a
joke?). This is a common act among babies. What does it signify ?

3V0483.1

3V0483.01 [That’s a pup] (5/20/79)

Robby’s National Geographic World subscription brings other materials
beside the magazine into the house. Beside the vixen and pup poster
(and others) occasionally a small set of ‘cards’ arrives. one recent set
was of various types of dogs. Peggy looked at one with two basset
hounds. “What’s that?” I asked. Peggy paused and replied [That’s a
pup].

3V0484.1

3V0484.01 Observation Hiatus while thesis completed. (5/21/79)

Completing my thesis on time for this semester’s graduation has been a
primary disaster for the natural observations of Peggy’s development.
I regret this lost material profoundly, and fear that it is from the period
of development which would have been most illuminating about
subsequent appearances of order in Peggy’s speech and more general
problem solving.

(later note: most of the observations from early April through this date
are reconstructions, based on a list of events jotted down on a
chalkboard in my study.)

3V0485.1

3V0485.01 Action initiation; observations of symbolic ‘up’ from discussions with
Mimi Sinclair (5/22/79)

I discussed Peggy’s development with Mimi Sinclair and we reviewed a
video tape or two. She encouraged me to continue with the study till
Peggy is at least two years old. We discussed several topics.

Peggy and shoes — Peggy has no shoes of her own. (This is true at 16
months, 5/22/79, as it was six weeks ago). She has never had baby
shoes put on her. In cold weather, when her dress has not built-in
‘socks’, she has had socks put on her feet. Consequently, her attempt
currently and even earlier to put her feet in others’ shoes is as clear a
case of imitation as one could ask for. Peggy continues to put her feet
in others’ shoes; once she walked across the room with one moccasin
of mine; yesterday it was Miriam’s cowgirl boots.

The token ‘up’ revisited — When I discussed this topic with Mimi, she
found it interesting but not convincing. Were there any clear signs that
Peggy wanted to be picked up? How did she indicate this normally? Did
she follow or precede this token with such behavior?

In our conversations, I could not agree that she had done so.
Thereafter, it became common for Peggy to place a toy in my lap then
indicate (by flapping her arms, by making eager noises and smiling, by
placing her hands in her armpits) that she also wanted to be in my lap.
Sometimes I refused to pick her up and she indicated her frustration
(crying was usually reserved for cases of minor hurts when I did not
pick her up at once).

Mimi’s general advice on the experiments was that I should try to be
less intrusive…. Perhaps this will be possible in the future if I get more
time to plan the weekly experiments.

3V0485.2

3V0485.02 Game-agent flexibility precursor to language (5/22/79)

Toe grabbing — We grownups tickle Peggy (so do the older children)
and she enjoys it. She has begun to try tickling us in return. Her
attempts are good imitations although not very effective. (She holds
her hand over a patch of skin and scratches [with] all her fingers one
after the other.

Another form of activity in which Peggy has ‘turned around’ the agent-
patient relation is ‘toe grabbing.’ Ofttimes when she carries Peggy past
me, Gretchen stops for a moment. Since she is usually standing and I
am sitting, Peggy’s foot is about hand height and it is my custom to
tickle her foot or grab her foot and wiggle it gently. Early in May, Peggy
toddled over to my chair, grabbed a hold of my big toe and shook it.
She looked at me expectantly, so I made loud noises of surprise. Peggy
was delighted. She has kept up this toe grabbing and has even attacked
my feet from under the dining room table. This apparently delights her
and is quite reminiscent of her cranking Scurry’s tail (which she
enjoys, doubtless, more than the dog does).

Importance — the turning-around of agent-patient relations is an
important precursor in action to structural flexibility in the use of
language.

3V0485.3

3V0485.03 Napping and Symbolic Play (5/22/79)

Napping — Sometimes when Peggy is playing in my lap, she will stop for
a while and lay her head down on my chest. She keeps her eyes open.
Peggy does this in other situations, not on people. For example,
yesterday she was bouncing on Miriam’s bed (she stands precariously
then definitely lets herself go, falling backward and bouncing on her
rump). In between these exercises, Peggy lay down her head on
Miriam’s pillow. Sometimes she smiles or laughs when she does it. It’s
a common activity of hers.

Importance — Could this “napping” be the precursor to that first
species of symbolic play, pretending-to-sleep? Since she does not close
her eyes, that significant aspect of sleeping is missing…but perhaps
Peggy doesn’t know that one closes his eyes in sleep? (She shares a
room with Miriam and surely has seen her [lie] in bed with closed
eyes.)

3V0485.4

3V0485.04 Action Imitation — Helpful Peggy (5/22/79)

Last Thursday or Friday I was washing windows using the Ritz cloth then
wiping down with an old linen dishtowel. Peggy noticed what I was
doing, and while I was working on the sliding glass doors downstairs,
she disappeared for a moment and returned with the dish towel that
she found hanging from the refrigerator door. She had it bunched up
and was making ‘wiping’ motions in the air.

3V0491.1

3V0491.01 Peggy hiding by closing her eyes; no sense of how others see her (5/28/79)

Peggy likes to hide and play chase. The way she hides is reminiscent of
playing peek-a-book [sic]. She will run to the corner of a wall and its
perpendicular projection and put her head in the corner. When I cry
out “Where’s Peggy?” she will peek and smile and hide her head again.

Playing chase with Miriam, Peggy shows the same sort of behavior. Her
most common hiding place is the corner formed by a cabinet and wall.
This gives her room to hide, but she not merely gets out of sight of the
chaser, she goes deep into the corner, puts her head there, and closes
her eyes.

Today (June 8th) Peggy hid in a different context. She was mad at me
because she wanted to go downstairs and the gate was closed. As she
came crying back to me (I sat in the bedroom), I condescendingly tried
to jollify her. Peggy was unconsoled and hid her head in the corner of
the hallway and the door jamb to the bedroom.

Importance — Peggy seems to have no sense at all of how she appears to
another. Like the ostrich who hides his head in the sand, Peggy acts as
though she does not see herself as others see her. We can consider this
note as capturing a starting point in the expected, long-developing
dissociation of points of view from primary egocentrism.

3V0491.2

3V0491.02 [Mommom, mo] (05/28/79)

Waving her milk cup at me, Peggy said, “Mommom, mo’.” (unclear if
that last meant ‘more’ or ‘milk’)

3V0492.1

3V0492.01 New Car Seat Opens up Peggy’s World (5/29/79)

Ever since the children got some real bargains at a tag sale last summer,
they have been followers of local tag sales. They take whatever cash they
can scrape up and spend it all, giving away their loot in case they can
not imagine a use for it and to justify the spending. Miriam bought
Peggy a crib toy and Robby bought her a set of little wheeled racing
animals some days ago. The next day, Miriam recalled seeing on sale
for $5. a car seat, which we need now that Peggy has outgrown her
infant seat. Gretchen purchased and I repaired the new car seat for
Peggy. A small thing this seems to be, but it has changed Peggy’s access
to the world significantly.

No longer does Peggy ride in a car facing backwards and below the level
of the window sill. She sits up, facing forward and looks out on the
world. Peggy has enjoyed coming outside to ride in her swing, play in
the sand box, or just walk about, say up the driveway to where Scurry
is tied. She has complained when brought in. But now her complaints
are getting more vehement. She even gestures inside, that she wants to
go outside. She has been so eager to go for rides that later on (June
4th) she rode all the way to Boston and back the next day without any
significant fussing.

Importance: This simple furniture addition, the new car seat, has
opened wider Peggy’s access to the world. When she goes shopping
with Gretchen, now she can see variety in the world about her as she
moves through it.

3V0493.1

3V0493.01 Fragmentary sound knowledge contrast to prosodics (5/30/79)

Diaper = /dai/ — Peggy needed changing this morning — so I believed —
and Gretchen upstairs agreed to do it. Peggy was complaining loudly,
toddling around and smacking her plastic pants. To make certain, I
asked, “What do you want, Peggy?” She replied [die] (/dai/) and
toddled over to the stairs eagerly.

When we got upstairs, Gretchen was folding laundry. I asked her not to
use any of her normal phrases. She asked something like “What shall
we do, Peggy?” Peggy, grabbing her plastic pants and smiling, said /gi/
and ran (at a fast toddle) into her bedroom.

Importance — It is very difficult to capture the sense of an infant’s
knowledge of names in speech production. These two incidents focus
on a situation where Peggy’s meanings were clear to me from the
pragmatics. In her attempts to respond to questions, we see her
produce parts of sound patterns we associated with the name ‘diaper’
and the action ‘change’. This very fragmentary speech knowledge
contrasts amazingly with the performances which witness Peggy’s rich
prosodic knowledge described in the later notes under the heading
TIRADEs.

3V0494.1

3V0494.01 Speech as intensifier of interactions; interrelations of idioms, names,
prosodics (5/31/79)

HOW’S THAT? (cf. toe grabbing, 5/22) — Peggy continues to grab my
foot and shake it when I prop one leg up over the other. She laughs
delightedly whenever I cry out in surprise and mock distress /ah ah/.
Sometimes I don’t respond as quickly as she would like and thus, I
believe, Peggy has begun to address me when she grabs my toe. She
asks (so I hear it) [HOW’S THAT?] as she shakes my foot and I respond
“Terrible.” Peggy repeats the transaction a few times then goes off.

Importance —
1. Peggy is applying speech as an intensifier of our interactions, an
additional way to gain my attention when contact isn’t sufficient.

2. Does she say “How’s that?”, an idiom context-appropriate, or does
she say “Have that?” If the latter, it is a variation on her well known
and bi-directional imperative “Have that!” I hear the former and
respond in a consistent way. It could be she has gradually
differentiated this new formula from her earlier well known form and
my mis-interpretation.

3. I noticed myself, as Gretchen paused near me taking Peggy to bed
last night, shaking her foot and saying “How’s that?” I expected her to
respond “Terrible.” (N.B. This was not a planned experiment — just
what I noticed myself doing.)

4. We should ask how this sort of verbal or speech knowledge relates to
Peggy’s knowledge of names and her knowledge of prosodics. Should
we not expect to see from the interaction of these three kinds of
knowledge the sudden emergence of discourse? I believe we have here
the real solution to the puzzle of the sudden acquisition of ‘syntactic’
knowledge by the infant.