Sometimes, when you watch your child playing, you might wonder whether he's headed for a future in the theater. Three-year-olds spend a great deal of time supplying dialogue to their dolls, imitating adults' conversations, and using different kinds of voices for different characters — high little voices for babies and deep and powerful ones for superheroes, for example.
These sophisticated variations in speech are evidence your child is internalizing the ways people use language. Listen closely and you may hear familiar phrases or pitches. Your child is catching on that grownups talk differently to one another than to children, for example, or that you sound one way when talking to your mom compared with your boss. Then he unconsciously practices these various modes of speech in hisplay. It's another reason preschoolers are such chatterboxes!
Your life now
You probably have scrapbooks full of photos of your child by now. (Or at least in your camera waiting to be uploaded ... hey, at least you snapped them!) How many are fantastic? How many are ho-hum? Hmm ... we thought so. Some tips on getting great shots of your moving target:
- Turn off the flash. The light will be nicer and it's less distracting.
- Go outside for better light, simpler backdrops, and a happier child.
- Snap away. You need to take a lot to get that great expression — which is why the digital camera is God's gift to parents.
- Resist posing. Capturing your child while he's concentrating on a toy, running, singing — anything active is liable to catch a truer moment.
- Plan props. Bubbles are a great smile-producer and look terrific, too. Have a third person on hand to blow while you shoot.
- Keep the camera ready. Stow it in your purse: You never know when that magic moment will appear.