Toddlers……and their amazing thought patterns! (Part 2)


blinking smiley

If you live in Nigeria, you are definitely familiar with the terms – NEPA & PHCN. Whether it accompanies low current, high current, quarter current, half current, phase current or no current, as long as you see or hear this two terms, you know that it refers to the chronically acute epileptic electrical power system in this blessed country!

Anyway, it was one of those dark nights, as we suddenly had an ‘UP NEPA’ (meaning they restored light) plus a fluctuating current moment. And thus, a conversation ensued with my ever witty 2½ year old:

Motun: “Ha! Mummy! E brought light!” (evaluating the change in environmental conditions)
Me: Haaa! (extreme pleasure from mummy)

(then the lights starts flickering)

Motun: “See! The light! E do like this…(blinks 2ce at a time continously)” (EUREKA! Evaluation and new discovery – I mean….light can actually blink!)

The look on her face was priceless!

I’m still amazed, it takes quite a lot of reasoning to compare light flickering to eyes blinking!

One of the things learnt from child psychology is that as toddlers mature, their ability to think increases (as expected). Toddlers want to understand things going on around them. They start to observe and to copy the behavior of others (and things) at this stage. Toddlers also begin to recognize patterns in everyday life and will expect things to follow certain patterns. If they don’t know the verbal language to use in describing something, they use the one tool they have been using since birth – BODY language (her eyes in the second incident).

Parents experiencing toddlerhood often mention the temper tantrums, disorganized environments and havoc caused by their toddlers, its time to actually sit and watch your child to try and make sense of what he is trying to achieve. Most times they are trying to say or show you how smart they are. It might be based on a previous experience or it could even be their own little discovery.

Think about these two incidents I have mentioned, most parents wouldn’t think much about them and might pass it off as “just being silly.” I hope my little scientist would still be this inquisitive (with her studies) as she goes through the school years later.

Afterall, if someone asked you (as an adult) to describe how light flickers, what would you say? You’d probably use your hands and fingers in haphazard motions, or try to give inapt descriptions that would go on and on, and you’d probably never get an accurate description! (Prove me wrong!)

But hey, my 2½ year old (proud mum that I am) summarizes it aptly, she tells me to see how the light is rapidly BLINKING!

(smiley by


2 thoughts on “Toddlers……and their amazing thought patterns! (Part 2)

  1. Bintu

    Makes interesting reading. I wonder if the ability to use body language fades as we grow due to an inherent ageing process or an environmental need to conform.

    • I think it’s a case of both. When our speech capabilities are fully developed, the brain prompts us to use verbal language, and environment definitely encourages language. We have to go with the flow, and hand gesticulation remains the only one we stay constant with.

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