Repetition – it is the key to learning.
Studying is basically a form of repetition. You go over the same information over and over again to eventually absorb it for long enough to spew it out during the exam.
It is no different for babies.
There is a reason that when they discover a new skill they tend to continue doing it for hours on end. When my son Gabe discovered he could ride his plastic motorbike we could not separate him from the thing. He would speed up and down the passage relentlessly, only stopping to refuel or when he was hauled off for a bath.
It was the same with his pushcart, when he began building Lego towers and going up and down a miniature slide head first – once he discovered he could do it, he did not want to stop.
It will be the same for talking. Repetition is the key.
There are a number of milestones recorded in a child’s early years, but few are as exciting as walking and talking for a parent. Ok, so I am talking for myself as a parent, but I reckon most would be inclined to agree with me.
When Gabe took his first step, it prompted wild celebrations from me and my wife. There is something amazing about watching your youngster go from a crawler to a walker. There were a lot of people that warned me it would be more difficult when he became more mobile, but with Gabe it has been easier.
For one, he does not get so frustrated making his way from the pot plant in the hallway to the washing machine in the kitchen, but it also means I can walk alongside him as he sets off on yet another adventure. He has found a measure of independence and that is very cool for a parent to watch.
Talking will be the next great breakthrough for Gabe and he appears on the verge of making the final step. He’s got "da-da" and "ma-ma" down cold, but we are far from conversation. We chat, but it’s pretty one-sided as the moment. He does like to chat back in his rambling baby-talk and I give him a high five or a thumbs-up.
It makes him smile and laugh, and considering how animated he gets – arms waving, eyes wide in amazement – it is pretty clear the little man has got up to some pretty incredible stuff while I'm away at work.
So for now, my wife and I continue to repeat word after word, waiting in anticipation for when Gabe follows suit, because it is going to be brilliant when I can share in the wonder of my son’s day of adventure.