Saturday, September 09, 2006

Colour section

A couple of months ago, while on holiday, I tried to introduce Elizabeth to the concept of colour. For props, I had several tubs of Play-Doh in different colours, with some duplicates. I thought I'd keep it simple and use just two colours - blue and purple. I was particularly careful to avoid orange, since that would just be confusing - she knows what "orange" means, and she eats them all the time.

So, the conversation went something like this:

Daddy [indicating the tub lid] "This is blue,"
Daddy [indicating the tub contents] "and this is blue,"
Daddy [indicating a second tub lid] "and this is blue,"
Daddy [indicating a third tub lid] "and this is purple."
Daddy [indicating the third (purple) tub lid] "What's this?"
Elizabeth "Purple."
Daddy [indicating the first (blue) tub lid] "What's this?"
Elizabeth "Purple."

Repeat with "blue" and "purple" interchanged.

Fast-forward two months, and she still thinks Play-Doh is called "purple". So yesterday I tried again, this time with three colours, and emphasising the idea of colour as a modifier: "This is blue Play-Doh, and this is purple Play-Doh, and this is green Play-Doh." But she was still convinced that they were all called "purple".

Today we were visiting Gran's, and she was playing with a pair of shoes. Not just any pair of shoes, though. These were plastic toy "glass slipper" type shoes, which Elizabeth, without prompting, and correctly, described as "purple". By Jove, I think she's got it!

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