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The Oop on Animals

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The Oop on Animals

February 16th, 2005  · stk

The first animal sound Alex made, was the "meow" of a cat, thank to our very own, built-in instructor (Tuxedo). When we moved to Edmonton, the dog next door (Roxy), taught Alex how to bark. With those two animals sounds well imprinted, she learned to recognize a "dog" and a "cat" in books. That became her reading staple and she ruined a good many of her books, bending the covers back to expose a page with a dog or a cat on them! If we want her to bark, all we have to ask her is, "What does Roxy say?" (Roxy barks a LOT, to the distraction of Rachel, who is trying to study, or Scott, awakened in the middle of the night. Roxy may be a nice dog, and she may have taught Alex to bark, but ENOUGH ALREADY!)

Alex has come a long way since those early animal sounds. I think we're on the cusp of a vocabulary break-thru, because she's now just starting to rapidly add new sounds AND words to her repertoire. We thought that we would preserve this moment, by recording those sounds she's learned first. Just click the FLASH audio play button |> , to listen to Alex's rendition of 8 different animal sounds. (We're partial to the bear - or lion, take your pick, because the roar and growl are indistinguishable). Trouble with the audio playback?



We'd like to teach Alex even MORE animal sounds, but we're bumping into a bit of a brick wall. We've been working on sheep, "baa baa baa", (which she thinks is a laugh, so will laugh in return), rooster, frog and goat ("maa maa maa" being too similar to "baa baa baa"). We've also discovered a problem ... not knowing what sounds some animals make!

You never really think about it till your a parent, I suppose, but just what sound DOES a rhinoceros make? A giraffe? A rabbit? An ostrich? Are we at odds because we're not as familiar with African and Australian species? Are these animals simply mute? These are but a few of the perplexing questions that nag at the parental mind.

Alex learns what we teach her and she does it well. We've been so focused on animal sounds (because she's so cute, doing them), that she's lost the ability to call a cat: "kitty cat". Try as we might, every effort to get her to say "kitty cat", is faithfully rewarded with a realistic "meow".

Sit back, relax & listen to the short audio file of "Alex - on Animals". Enjoy!

EDIT (18-Feb-05): Yesterday, Alex went grocery shopping with Rachel. As they were ringing up, the cashier noticed an abundance of bananas. She looked at Alex and said, "You know, if you eat all these bananas, you'll turn into a monkey." Monkey? Well trained, Alex promptly responded with the monkey sound you hear in the audio file. (The cashier just about fell over, laughing, from this unexpected response!)

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Updated: 22-Jun-2005
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Hi Rachel & Scott

Had the pleasure of having Rachel's Mom & Dad visit us several times over the last couple of weeks and Mom and Auntie Ann visit for lunch today. We were introduced to your (magnificent) website and the splendid pictures (and mp3 sounds). We almost felt as though we were with you. Keep up the good work .. and make sure you preserve a copy of it all to embarrass Alex with when she gets older!

All the very best,

Judith & Colin Knipe