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No, No Like It

by Maureen Slamer

No, No Like It

“Brady…, Brady, breakfast,” Mom called.  The pitter-patter of Brady feet sounded down the hall.  Mom swooped, grabbed Brady, and tucked him in his chair.  “Breakfast, Brady.” 

Brady looked at his eggs.  He looked up.  “No.”

“Brady, you like eggs.” 

“No.”  Brady shook his head.  “No, no, no.”

Mom forked a bite of eggs.  “Eggs are good, Brady.  You like eggs.”  Brady pursed his lips.  He shook his head.  “Come on buddy, you’ve gotta eat.”  This is so frustrating.  I wish I could understand what he wants. 

Brady leaned away, his head moving side to side.  “No, no.”

 “Okay, Brady, you don’t want eggs.”

“No, no, like it.  No like it.

“Oh, you don’t like eggs.  What do you want?”  Whoa, when did he start adding more words?  Maybe “no” won’t be his favorite word anymore.  

Brady pointed at the counter.  Mom waited.  “B. B. B… bread!  B bread!”

“Brady, you want banana bread?”  He told me!

“B bread.”

“Thank you for telling me Brady!  Banana bread is yummy!

“B bread, yummy.”

Learning to Talk Through Everyday Conversation

Twenty-three month old Brady is learning to communicate.  He knows and understands the word, “no” (“No.”  Brady shook his head.  “No, no, no.”).  He is beginning to put words together in two to four-word sentences.  (“No, no, like it. No like it.) Brady is learning language and its power by using his words to express his needs and wants.  His mother’s reaction supports his learning.  She models for Brady how language works (“Brady, you want banana bread?”).  She is helping him learn how to talk by using her words as a model (“Banana bread is yummy!”).  Brady is learning how to put the words together (“B bread, yummy.”). 

Our littlest talkers need models.  They learn to talk by talking and listening. Each time they encounter speech (talk), learning occurs.  They are beginning to put words together in phrases and sentences to communicate.  Littles at this stage like sameness, routines, and movement.  They love familiar stories, rhymes, and rhythm.  They want to hear the same story over and over again in exactly the same way.  NO CHANGES!  A page cannot be skipped!  All of this repetition provides an avenue for learning and talking.  So let’s use these opportunities to our advantage.


  • finding books that show and tell things they normally see and activities they do.
  • singing songs with both movement and words (Wheels on the Bus, If You’re Happy And You Know It, Shake My Sillies Out).
  • talking with your child and expanding on their talk.

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