Sunday, August 25, 2013

Verbal Progress

Geri's speech therapist has had us working a lot on "what?" questions. What does a dog say? What does a cow give us? What do we do with a toothbrush?

She's getting really good at them. In fact, we had a great conversation tonight. We were cuddling at bed time and i asked her a couple of questions we have practiced.

"Geri, " I said, "What does a bird build?"
"A bird builds a nest," she answered.
"What comes after 3?"
"After 3 comes 4, " she replied. I decided to try a brand new question to see what she would say.
"Geri," I asked, "What comes after 4?"
"5 then 6," she told me.

Wow. Just wow. We've never practiced that question. We had to practice the "what comes after 3?" question several times before she could answer it reliably. But, without coaching, she extrapolated the answer to the first question out, not just one step but two steps forward!

It's been fun watching how her mind works. When we started on the questions about birds, it was a hoot. There was an answer her therapist wanted (a bird builds a nest) but at first we got something pretty cute. The first time I asked her what a bird builds, she immediately said "A house." Well sure, I thought. We build houses, I guess she would assume birds do too. And she's not entirely wrong. A human habitat is a house, a bird habitat is a nest. I just smiled and said "A bird builds a nest." The next time I asked her what a bird builds, she answered "A bird house."  Again, it hurt my heart to correct her. In a way, she was right. And in a way, her answer was far more clever than the stock answer.

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