Little Monkey Memories

Sporting a natty chapeau (nothing to do with memory, but who doesn't like a nice hat?)

The Little Monkey oftens catches Mrs. Monkey-shines and I by surprise with the things that he remembers. I don’t really have a frame of reference, so I don’t know if he’s unusually good, or if all children are like him. I guess it might seem surprising because you think of people not remembering things from their early childhood; but when you stop and think, it’s obvious that all sorts of memory skills are needed for language acquisition, developing life skills, social skills and so on.

Anyway, it impresses us that the Little Monkey mentions library books that he read months previously, although reading them dozens of times probably helps. If the mood strikes him he can rattle off the whole of ‘This Little Piggy’ or ‘Row Row Your Boat’ (the crocodile variant, including a scream), although you probably need to be familiar with his idiomatic, first-syllable-only, speech to recognise the songs. But I guess most startling is when he remembers things that we don’t, like when he hears a song and says “we sang that at the li-li [library]”, and I rack my brains to recall the lady singing it several weeks before. He has also (at least partly) memorised the playlist of his favourite Jo Jingles CDs, and on returning to the car after a day out he will sometimes tell you what song will be next when you get in and turn on the ignition, having remembered the song that was playing when he got out of the car earlier…

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