# The SHAPE of things to come

Sometimes I am taken aback by how quickly the Little Man is learning things. I mean I am made virtually speechless. When Kelly and I go to pick him up from school, we sometimes watch him play for a little while before going into the classroom. If he sees us, he stops what he’s doing and runs to us, lunging himself into our arms.

Yesterday, we went in while they were doing an activity. All of the little kids were sitting around while one of the teachers showed them flashcards with shapes and ask them what the shape is. You know, circles, ovals, stars, triangles. The Little Man jumped into my arms when he saw me. Then the teacher showed a flashcard with a star on it. “What is this?” she asked.

“‘Tar!” replied the Little Man–and I was stunned. I had no idea he was learning shapes, let alone could recognize them and say the words.

She help up a circle. “What is this?”

“Cirple,” the Little Man said. (That’s not a typo–he actually says “Cirple.”)

He also knows triangle (“tri-gle”); square (“care”); and oval (“ohhhh-vul”). I don’t know why but I was incredibly impressed by all of this. (Can you tell?) The kid is really like a sponge, he picks stuff up so fast.

We are very fortunate to have him in a school that is not just a daycare but that has a program throughout the day that teaches him practical stuff (like using utensils, wiping your face after eating, throwing trash away) as well as educational stuff like learning shapes and animals and colors.

On our way to the mailbox I made a circle with my thumb and forefinger. “What is this, buddy?” I asked.

“Cirple!” he said cheerfully.

When we got back into the house I said to Kelly, “Watch this–” I made the circle again. “–What is this, buddy?”

And the Little Man smiled and said in voluble tones, “Eh-pane!” Oh well.