Tuesday, December 7, 2010


From Phoebe's earliest days with us, we witnessed an incredible determination to complete whatever she set out to do. I remember at her very first Early Intervention assessment, just two weeks after arriving, her focused concentration as she tried to get a peg into a board with holes. Most recently, Phoebe started working on doing her own hair. We first marveled when she put a hairband on her wrist, smoothed her hair back into a ponytail, then pulled the hairband from her wrist and around her hair. We watched her work, work, work to get the next step. I remember Mark, two weeks ago, saying, "If she twists it, I'm calling Mensa." And then-- she twisted it! At age 2, Phoebe can now make her own ponytail, with most of her hair pulled back, with up to four twists for a total of five loops. I can't believe it. Ends up, her teacher reveals that this ponytail making has been a big part of her "work" at Montessori school. This e-mail from her teacher Pam is classic, and worth quoting in full. Enjoy!

"I have been watching Phoebe's progress in the art of pony tail making. I have been amazed from the start. She also does great with assorted barrettes. She practices with great focus and determination. With her pony tails, she doesn't want help, and exerts such effort. In the past she would work on it over time, with breaks in between. During these breaks she would work with classroom materials with her hair down, ignoring it. Eventually, perhaps an hour or two later, she would ask Paulette or I to put a new pony tail in for her. But, until she was ready to have help, she did not want us to help her in any way. With the barrettes, she has brought them to me to help her to put them in the first couple of times and then has done them on her own. Her success with the pony tails has gone from one loose band holding her hair in somewhat of a loop last week to your observation of the three twists with the band today. But, she has been building up to this for perhaps two weeks. Here's a photo of her working as she walks which is actually how she does it. Or actually one day she worked repeatedly to make one while sitting in an assembly. I watch her in awe. During the assembly I tapped the teacher next to me and pointed to be sure she saw . It was Diane. I think my jaw has fallen open more than once as I have watched her. I remember the first few times that she took out her hair band. She spent a great deal of time with her head slightly tipped back, giving an occasional shake, and her two hands combing through her hair on each side as one does in preparation for making a pony tail. She was so adorable. . ."