Apart from a number of milestones that your baby goes through, the process of speech is the one that brings utmost bliss. Your baby starts to recognize voices from within the womb. This is mostly what they begin to reciprocate later. Familiar voices and faces are initiators for the development of language.
You will come across four distinct stages in the development of language. The first begins from 0-5 months – then – 6-11 months, 12-17 months and 18-23 months. Along these stages your child will make a visible progress in their speech.
During this stage your child recognizes voices and faces. They react to speech by staring at your face while you speak to them, moving the head or hand towards the source of the noise. Further, children also tend to vocalize pleasure/displeasure through sounds of giggles and crying.
At this stage, your baby tries to communicate through hand and head gestures. They learn how to string a few syllables together, making simple noises such as ‘mumma’ and ‘dadda’. Although they do not understand what they are saying, they tend to understand the joy that you feel when you hear such words. During this stage they try to repeat sounds that you make.
Now children’s attention to vocabulary grows. This happens to an extent of understanding simple books read to them. Children pay attention and try to imitate the small words. They recognize faces clearly either calling out verbally or by pointing.
Your baby is finally at the prime age of learning. They listen and understand simple things such as ‘eat’, ‘sleep’, etc. Body parts are understood by pointing and simple commands from you are comprehended without hand gestures. They are also able to say at least 8 words even though their speech might not be clear as yet.
These are the first few stages of language development in your baby. The stages that come after this are more distinct where the pronunciation and repetition becomes evident. Their understanding of situations and how to react becomes rational. You are sure to enjoy these stages of your baby’s development. Know that the stages are an average stipulated time for a baby and it is subject to change!