A couple of weeks ago, one of our behavior analysts came by one of the programs bringing her new baby, a brand new human being (not yet a month old), to be greeted, recognized and included in the family. What a treat! I’ve not had the pleasure of holding a newborn for a while.
What a bundle of listener behavior! Eyes in constant motion, checking out what’s happening… Orienting to interesting sounds… Finding a face, scrunching his eyebrows, making mouth shapes… Holding this little guy erect… making swimming motions with his arms as though anticipating the high guard necessary to stand up without falling down.
And then there’s his speaker behavior… What a powerful little agent at 3+ weeks old! Using one verbal operant, okay maybe two (wailing and fussing) this brand new human being exerts extraordinary control of the adults around him. Hold me… Stand up… Walk around… Bounce me… Make soothing sounds… Don’t even think of stopping, or….
Learning starts right away!