I’ve mentioned before that I love watching the process of language acquisition. I think it’s so cool to see how children learn an entire language from just hearing it and how they go through the same stages, babbling, single words, short sentences, long sentences, and even nuances.
Samantha is learning some nuances right now, and they’re hilarious. She’s picking up colloquialisms from various people. She’s learned how to throw an uff-da into the conversation appropriately from me (that would be Norwegian and commonly heard in Minnesota). I’ve discovered it’s not that easy to use correctly. My husband tries sometimes. He just sounds funny. It’s one of those phrases you have to pick up as a child to get the nuances right. He learned it from me as an adult, and trust me, it doesn’t work for him.
She also says “actually” a lot. Also from me. As in, “Actually, I was just going to do that,” or “That would be nice, actually.” It’s kind of annoying, actually. So I’m bummed she’s picked it up.
There’s also Oh. My. God. and ohmygod, ohmygod, ohmygod. Another one from me. Ooops.
Then there’s the things she’s picking up from preschool. In particular, she has started saying “girl”. She has a teacher who is in her early fifties, African American, and has a slight southern twang. She says “girl” a lot. As in, “Girl, come over her and show Ms. Mary your coat,” and “Girl, you better not be doing that after I just told you to stop it.” That kind of thing. I’m sure you can imagine the intonation and inflection she uses.
Sammy has it down pat. And I have to say, it’s hilarious. She says it only to Ella. They’ll be playing together and I’ll here, “Girl, come over here,” and “Girl, what are you doing?”
I wonder if it’s something she’ll continue to use once she’s no longer around that teacher, or if she will drop it at some point. I guess I’ll just have to keep studying her language acquisition and find out.