When Do Babies Say Their First Word? Before infants learn to talk, they coo and babble. These sounds or baby talk eventually turn into words and ultimately into sentences. Major vocal milestones occur in the first three years of life. The stage is characterized by rapid growth of the brain. Babbling plays an important in the journey towards proper communication. The initial chatter is hard to comprehend but it provides an insight into the child’s cognitive development.
When Do Babies Say Their First Word?
The process requires memorizing and repetition of sounds. Infants have to master both verbal and nonverbal actions to create rapport. The baby begins by trying out sounds and listening for reaction. This social component allows him to learn language rules and two-way interaction.
The journey starts soon after birth when they engage in nonverbal communication. They grimace, squirm and cry. This allows infants to express a wide range of emotions. From sensory overload and hunger to fear and frustration; they are hardwired to communicate from day one.
The answer to the question, when do babies say their first word or when do babies say mama varies considerably from one baby to another. However, an infant should not miss key milestones in speech and cognitive development. If this is the case, parents are advised to contact a family doctor or pediatrician. Some babies say their first words in the 9th month while others only say first words by the 18th month.
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Some of the common initial words include ‘Da’ or ‘Da-Da’ (most often for Daddy). Ma-ma is another common word. Either way, the moments are simply magical and memorable. It comes as no surprise that many parents wonder when do babies say Dada.
How old are babies when they say their first word? Baby First Words
In the third month, babies start by listening to voices and other sounds. They respond to voices or music by turning towards the direction of the sound. It is common for babies to show preference of women’s voices than men’s. The cooing begins after the third month. It is characterized by a gentle yet repetitive vocalization. During these stages, babies tend to watch the face as someone talks.
By the six month, infants start babbling before they respond to their own names or use tone to express emotion. They even begin recognizing their native language. However, the babbling associated with this age group typically comprises random syllables. This lack of comprehension or real meaning prepares the stage for improved verbal utterances.
At nine months, the little ones can understand a number of commonly used words like ‘bye-bye’ and ‘no.’ They may begin to use a broader range of tones of voice and consonant sounds to communicate. The twelve month sees the baby say a couple of words with improved clarity. Some of the words they master very early on include ‘dadda’ and ‘mama.’ At this age, babies no longer just utter these words but they actually understand their meaning. They begin comprehending short requests that entail a one-step action like ‘put that down.’
When babies reach one year and six months, they are ready to utter multiple words. In addition, the little ones have the capacity to combine verbal communication with gestures. They can provide clarity by pointing to objects or people. The small boys and girls begin imitating words adults say, especially the last word in a sentence.
The funny part of the utterances is that they often omit beginnings or endings of words. The word ‘dog’ may be pronounced as just ‘daw’ while ‘radio’ becomes ‘dio.’ On the other hand, two-year old can string short phrases of between two and four words like ‘Daddy bye-bye’ or ‘I don’t want milk.’
The learning process allows them to grasp some basic abstract ideas. They may link an object like ‘toy’ with ‘mine.’ At three years, baby talk entails a rapid expansion of vocabulary. Children often start using make-believe play to boost comprehension of both abstract and symbolic language. This makes it easy for the young inquiring minds to grasp spatial concepts like ‘in.’
Helping baby learn to talk
Talking to the little one using short, simple words helps with speech development. This approach is effective because babies just love hearing their parents’ voices. Before long, they starting imitating the words. It is vital to pay close attention the cooing and babbling. Following up on the babbles by repeating the baby talk stimulates the child’s cognitive development.
Praising the child for all attempts at baby talk also provides much-needed motivation to continue talking. Babies place a lot of emphasis on the reactions of adults in these developmental stages. During playtime, it is recommended that parents let the child lead the conversation. This ensures that the little one understands that communication is a two-way affair. Soon the child will begin engaging (or say first word) in the interactions by talking, listening, leading as well as following.
Elaborating on some of the interactions boosts a clearer picture in the child’s mind. When he points at an object like a toy and makes noise, it is crucial to elaborate the scenario. Responding to the action and sounds by simply passing him the toy does not help. Instead, parents should point to the toy and ask whether the child wants it.
In addition, explaining actions like washing, cooking, feeding and dressing is a practical way to rapidly boost his comprehension. When he says randoms words that are not easy to understand, it is fine to respond in a way that closely imitates the words.