Babbling is an important stage of your baby’s language development. Would you like to know when do babies babble and what are some habits to encourage your child? So this article is for you.
Babbling is an important part of language development and occurs before a child is able to form words and complete sentences. At this stage, your little one is in contact with the different sounds they hear and can receive stimuli from their daily activities with parents and caregivers.
At this stage, there are some habits that can contribute to your little one’s development. It’s also important to know when do babies babble and what are the next stages in child communication.
What Is Babbling?
Babies learn to speak in several stages. Your child may start sighing and muttering at first. Later on, they will connect syllables composed of consonants and vowels. This is what we usually call babbling. By making noises like “da-da” and “ga-ga”, your child begins to prepare for the stage of word articulation.
The act of babbling is important because it helps your baby develop their communication skills. Children who do not respond to sounds and do not make progress in their ability to communicate may have hearing problems. Therefore, it is important to talk to the child’s pediatrician if you have any concerns.
A good part of your child’s brain structure usually develops in the first three years of life. At this stage, your baby will be more susceptible to learning and can also be influenced by what is happening around them. Therefore, during this period, it is recommended that parents engage in quality interactions with their children.
Before they get to the stage where they can talk and form sentences, children need to become familiar with sounds and then begin to imitate them. In summary, the skills that they learn during the first years of life will influence the skills that they will develop in the future.
When Do Babies Start Babbling?
Babies can reach developmental milestones like babbling at different ages. Babies often begin to babble between 4 and 6 months of age and continue to build their repertoire of words and sounds during the next months.
This is an overview of what you can expect, but the timeline may vary:
- Between 6 weeks and 3 months: Babies produce vowel sounds such as “a-aa”, “u-uu”, gurgles, and coos.
- 4-5 months: They combine vowel and consonant sounds, like “da-da” and “ga-ga”.
- At 6 months: They repeat syllables, such as da-da-da-da.
- Between 8 and 18 months: They form meaningful words, like “wa-ta” to refer to the “water”.
How Can Parents Encourage Their Baby To Babble?
It is possible to support your baby during the phase when they begin to babble. Studies show that children learn to communicate faster when parents respond to their babbles with supportive language. It is recommended to make eye contact with your child and smile while “talking” to them.
Parents and caregivers can also respond to babbling and make a connection to an object. For example, when your child says “ba,” you might respond as if they were referring to a ball and say, “Yes, this is your blue ball!”. It is also recommended that you imitate your baby’s babbling.
Also, if you notice your little one repeating a sound you make, do it more often. As silly as it sounds, this repetition will make them understand that people use sounds to communicate. Another recommendation is to “talk to yourself” when it comes to finding a topic of conversation with your baby.
For example, you can ask your child questions and answer them. Ask things like, “Should we play with the dog or watch a cartoon?”, Then, reply, “Yes, let’s play with the dog!” This practice will make the baby understand that a conversation implies taking turns.
Explaining what you are doing together is also an interesting practice. You can say, “I’m going to wear this coat so I won’t be cold!”. Even if your child doesn’t understand what you’re saying, talking to them will help them better understand the words and express themselves better.
You can also identify the noises around you so that your child develops their attention skills. You can set the example by saying, “Listen, the dog is barking!” Reading books out loud during your day or night routine is also recommended, which can further strengthen your bond with your little one.
The habit of singing can also help your baby understand that words are made up of different sounds and can be combined. You can sing children’s songs or even your favorite tunes and dance with your little one!
Although it is necessary to talk to your child and sing to them, you must also leave some space for silence so that your little one can also express their thoughts. Most babies will respond when there is silence because their brain has to process the information and formulate a response.
What Are The Next Stages In Baby Communication?
After so much practice and support, your child will begin to blend sounds to form their first words. Between 12 and 17 months, your baby will be able to pronounce two or three words to refer to a person or object, even if their pronunciation is not very clear.
From 18 to 23 months, your little one’s vocabulary will grow to about 50 words, but the pronunciation of all of them may not be understandable. At this stage, babies can also imitate animal sounds and begin to use pronouns, such as “I.”
A little later, at 2 or 3 years old, children will begin to speak more precisely and use adjectives such as “happy”. Your little one will also learn spatial concepts like “inside.” At this stage, they may also use plurals, like “balls,” and past tense verbs, like “I ate”.
While each child develops at their own pace, it is important to pay attention to developmental milestones. If you think your child may have a speech delay, be sure to talk to your pediatrician about it.
Now you know when do babies babble and why it is so important for child development. On Kinedu, you will find activities designed by masters in child development, classes on multiple subjects, chats with experts and so on. Download the app for FREE HERE.