Baby talk

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    What age does a child fully understand a question and is able to reply?

    #11928 Report


    That can depend. You can certainly see that from just a few months old they are aware that if you mention their names, or that of Mummy and Daddy, etc, they know who you are referring to. They are talking to you all the time but you might not understand the sounds they make! You soon learn them however, and if you don’t the baby gets frustrated and becomes more irritable. Most of what they talk about is to do with food. Once they start to explore they often have conversations about pretty much everything. As for words you will understand, Daddy, Yes, No, Mummy, juice, and maybe one or two others (biscuit in my house!) are all there by one-ish. They understand more than you know, often through tone and repetition. Don’t forget to them biscuit might be ba-ba or dik-dik. Many words may sound the same initially but it is clear what THEY mean by other means such as pointing, looking, touching, etc.

    Sometimes people say girls learn faster, or younger siblings develop more quickly to “catch up” etc. This is all nonsense. All children learn things their own way – they know no other! My eldest boy was walking at 8 months and talking at 1 year. My middle boy didn’t walk til he was 13 months and at two his vocabulary is about a year behind his brother. My girl (who’s a twin) watched her twin brother make all the mistakes of falling over and bumping into things and finally got up and walked perfectly without any practice or crawling at the age of 1 and a half and has never had an accident. She rarely speaks, but she watches all the time and sucks her thumb (the boys don’t). She reacts to everything and when she speaks it’s completely clear. She has her own strategy of dealing with life!

    This is useful but there is no typical:

    I’m 3 months old! I follow moving toys or faces with my eyes, recognize or know the bottle or breast,  respond to loud or new sounds, reach for and grasp toys or hair,  wiggle and kick my legs and arms, lift my head and shoulders up while on stomach, smile back at parents or other family members, make sounds, like gurgling, cooing or babbling

    I’m 6 months old! I… turn toward voices, reach for toys and pick them up, roll over front-to-back and back-to-front, play with my toes, help hold bottle during feedings, if bottle fed, know faces of family members, babble, squeal, and repeat vowel sounds, like ooh, -ae, -e, sit by leaning on my hand

    I’m 9 months old! I… copy sounds or gestures, reach for crumbs or other small things with my thumb and fingers, move toys from one hand to the other hand, I straighten my arms to support myself when I’m on my stomach, understand the word “No”

    I’m 12 months old! I… respond to my name, may be scared of strangers, look for an object if you hide it from me, even if I can’t see it, crawl on my hands and knees, pull myself to a standing position, walk by holding onto furniture, can drink from a cup with your help, enjoy playing games, like peek-a-boo or patty cake, say 1 to 2 words

    I’m 15 months old! I… use gestures, like to look at pictures in a book, can hold a crayon in my fist, hand toys to you when you ask me, can point to pictures you name, if the things in the picture are familiar to me, walk alone without help

    I’m 18 months old! I… like to pull and push things, follow simple directions, pull off shoes and socks, feed myself sometimes, step off low objects and keep balance, turn 2 to 3 pages of a book at a time, can point to one body part, can name one object, like to copy your words or actions


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