Univision / Dr. Gail Gross

Promoting (Encouraging) Your Baby’s First Words

January 26, 2016

Promoting (Encouraging) Your Baby's First Words

Discover how to stimulate your baby’s language.

From his first “a-a-a,” there is plenty you can do to promote the language development of your baby. We’ll tell you what!

By their first words: 

While infants say their first real words at about one year, their brains are ready to learn language from birth, said Dr. Barry Zuckerman, a member of the board of the NGO Parenting Journey.

In learning to speak, your baby will go through different stages: making vocal sounds (6 months); then consonants (9 months); to stringing syllables ka, da, ma and at 12 months, the syllables become her first word, for example, “Mom.”

Give them positive ‘feedback’:

Your baby depends on your reactions to her efforts to learn the language. Therefore, you can strengthen your communication by smiling, making eye contact, active listening and conveying emotions. Raising your voice and your pitch, or using emotional expressions will capture the attention of your little one and engage her in the learning process.

Push yourself to talk:

It is the key to enhancing your child’s language, says Dr. Gail Gross, a Houston psychologist specializing in family and child development.

Play ‘Peekaboo’ or ‘Patty Cake.’ And, sing songs that include activities with words such as “We will paddle in a small boat, fast, fast, fast, fast, in a small boat.” These entertaining activities favor the child’s language development.

Give your child items and identify them with energy. “Here’s the spoon.” “This is your pacifier.” By attaching action with words and emotion, you help your child create associations in his brain… and this advances speech.

Talk, talk, talk… and accompany your words with movement. As with the previous strategy, this enhances linguistic connections.

Be interactive.  If you’re feeding your child, have a two-way conversation by asking questions.The synapses are connecting as you make associations. Speaking to your child in complicated language can raise his IQ.

Identify parts of the body. Teach him, this is your nose, these are your feet, and this is your mouth. And then ask, “Where’s your nose? Where your mouth?” Elevating your voice with emotion, while doing this, makes learning exciting and therefore, captures your child’s attention.

Categorize objects. Brings together all the stuffed animals together, put the balls together, gather the bath toys. Then you can ask your child to identify them.

Sing songs… recite nursery rhymes… read stories… and when he’s a little older, have your child tell you a story.

Play Baroque music in the background. Weird, isn’t it? This puts the brain into a state similar to the one reached by meditating. It helps your child process information better. Therefore, he has a better chance to reach his full potential, concluded Dr. Gross.

Translated to English from Spanish. Read original article here.