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  • Date :
  • 7/27/2009

 Parents in Communication to 4- to 7-Month-Old 

father & child

What Should I Do?

Babies this age like being stimulated by games and vocal interactions. Your baby will be thrilled when you copy his or her coos and gurgles. Imitate your baby's vowel sounds, then follow up by saying some simple words that contain the same vowel sound.

Have ‘conversations’and wait for a pause in your baby's babble to ‘answer.’ The give-and-take of these early discussions will set the stage for those first real words in the months to come. Ask your baby questions, and respond enthusiastically to whatever answers you get.

Introduce your baby to simple words that apply to everyday life. Use adult words — experts say that babies understand words long before they can pronounce them, and good speech habits help shape a baby's speech patterns.

When you talk to your baby, slow your speech and emphasize single words — for example, say: ‘Do you want a toy? This is your toy,’ as you show it to him or her. Then wait for a response. Following your speech with moments of silence will encourage your baby to vocalize and teach that conversation involves taking turns.

Your baby will love being read to from books with large, brightly colored pictures, and this will help form good speech habits while your little one enjoys looking at the images.

Sometimes babies are not in the mood to vocalize and need a break from all the stimulation around them. If your baby turns away, closes his or her eyes, or becomes fussy, let your baby be.

Should I Be Concerned?

Your baby will probably reach some communication milestones during this period. By the end of the seventh month, babies usually:

• respond to their names

• respond to sounds by making their own

• start to babble or imitate sounds

Remember that there is a wide range of what's normal for babies. There is usually no cause for concern, but talk to your doctor if your baby misses any of these milestones.


Other links:

Reading Books to Babies (part1)

Reading Books to Babies (part 2)

Pacifiers prevent breastfeeding success

How can I tell if my child is sick?

Fitness and Your 4- to 5-Year-Old

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