Monday, March 27, 2023

Constructing a dance with language

Day 27 of 31 at TWT!
"I'm a dancer! Will you be my audient?" Rainbow Girl's sweet little voice pipes up cheerfully to my husband as she hop-prances around the room. 

Did she say "audient"? I grin and lean closer. Husband starts explaining that he needs to get to work. 

She tip-toe bounces over to me. "Mommy! Will YOU be an audient?" 

She did! She said "audient!" And she even said "an" before it. The language nerd in me is fascinated. At 4, she can read letters and is starting to try to sound out simple words, but of course she's never read the word "audience", only heard it. She must imagine it as "audients", and knowing that an audience is a group of lots of people, she must've have concluded that 1 person watching someone do something is an "audient"! 

I imagine more Lego-like building blocks just like the prefixes I wrote about yesterday: "Audients" = many - snap - "audient" = 1! A creative little builder with words, just like with her blocks and Magna-Tiles. Wow. That is some truly brilliant language construction.

In front of me, she begins to twirl, leap, and kick, mixing imitations of her big sister's Irish dance moves with her own dainty whirls and swoops. And I, the audient, lean forward, rapt, trying to freeze this moment as she dances her way into the sweet girl she's becoming, one creatively constructed word at a time.

Wouldn't you like to be an "audient" for this moment? <3


  1. Oh, my goodness, what a beautiful slice. Language development is so fascinating , but add all the insight of mama AND the sweetest picture- I really loved reading this!
    Diane Anderson (newtreemom)

  2. I'm impressed by both dancer and writer-sleuth here. I don't know if I would have made that connection with plural to singular--that is a brilliant deduction. Learning with littles is fascinating! I can feel both the mama and the teacher coming through in your writing today. Thank you for sharing your insight!

  3. I love your insight into "audient". You're right--it is smart thinking on her part! Now I want to use the word "audient" myself! I love, too, your description of "Rainbow Girl" dancing. It conjures such a sweet image.


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