The Voice of Childhood

With Sage's language, vocabulary and dialogue developing by the day, lately I've been pondering how to best capture these ordinary, everyday 'conversations' and preserve them for reflection in the days and years to come. Whilst she was at her art table just recently, I reverted back to my almost daily practise as an early childhood teacher, and simply wrote as she spoke. I messily scribbled down her words and actions as she chatted freely, and without hesitation, in a way that only an egocentric, expressive two year old can.

Although by her side, I tried to keep my presence as unobtrusive as possible. Without interruption or interference, Sage is more likely to drift away to an inner world of thought, imagination and wonder, yet be comforted in the knowing that I am present. At times, admittedly, this can be difficult. With her endless questions and developing abilities, it is so easy to fall into an information-giving/"I'll show you the 'right' way" mindset. Consciously, I try to hold back from imposing myself and my ideas on her explorations in order for her to increase her understandings and knowledge through self-initiated experimentation.

Although much of Sage's current talk is simply an audible stream of consciousness or a verbal description of what she is doing at any given time, I love that it gives me an otherwise overlooked insight into her mind and how she is processing the world around her. I created the simple template above, later that evening, in order to document the photographs and words from our typical encounter during that day {and will use the same format when recording future moments - hopefully weekly}. However, I am still mulling over how to store these pages in order for them to become a valued component of her childhood story. A photo book perhaps?

I'd love to hear your ideas...

{Side note - Just recently, when visiting my parent's house, Sage found an old cassette entitled 'KIDS' beside their 35 year old stereo system. She, my mum and myself gathered around, watching with wonderment as the tape began to turn and then listened with delight as the voices of a seven year old me and my three year old brother came resounding through the speakers. (Un)melodic renditions of 'twinkle, twinkle' and 'hey diddle diddle' sung to the strums of my father's guitar filled the room, as did mini interviews encapsulating our ages, school life and our (then) current favourites. This voice recording brought with it the deepest sense of nostalgia and has inspired me to also record the voices of our children, so that one day they may sit in our rumpus room and feel the same way I did that very afternoon, listening as innocence filled the air.}

How do you go about documenting your child's story?

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