Jake got much of his early language from media outlets. SpongeBob, Sesame Street, YouTube videos. He’d watch, memorize, and then utilize his skill with echolalia to communicate.
One of his favorite pastimes is to watch videos of people playing video games on YouTube. He uses this not just for tips on language, but to gain insight and expertise with that particular game. I can’t count the number of times he’s gotten stuck on a Mario game, only to YouTube that particular level, watch someone else play, and then return to the living room an expert. It’s kinda creepy.
Anyway, last night he had us film a game of Mario Party 10 played by Jake, Gabe, Beth and I. The whole thing took about 34 minutes, and Jake acted like an over-the-top host. He was animated, he “introduced” the video, and at the end, he even says, “Thank you for watching Mario Party 10, we’re going to make another video next week” at the end.
Granted, it’s probably the most boring 34 minutes of video ever uploaded to YouTube, but I can’t get this level of language and enthusiasm from Jake when I put him directly in front of the camera. I’d watch the first couple of minutes, and then the last couple for a taste of his goofiness. This video will likely go viral, but all 3 million views will be Jake, reliving his glory.
Jake’s come full circle from learning to speak while listening to videos JUST LIKE the one we made last night.