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Baby Talk
For babies from birth to 1 year

Babies love hearing your voice.

When you answer her sounds with sounds of your own, she begins to learn that what she "says" has meaning and is important to you.

What To Do
Talk to your baby often. Answer her coos, gurgles, and smiles. Repeat the "ba, ba's" and "ga, ga's" she makes. Talk, touch, and smile back. Get her to look at you.
Play simple talking and touching games with your baby. Ask, "Where's your nose?" Then touch her nose and say playfully, "There's your nose!" Do this several times, then switch to an ear or knee or her tummy. Stop when she or you grow tired of the game.
Change the game by touching the nose or ear and repeating the word for it several times. Do this with objects, too. When she hears you name something over and over again, she begins to connect the sound with what it means.
Do things that interest your baby. Vary your tone of voice, make funny faces, sing lullabies, and recite simple nursery rhymes. Play "peek-a-boo" and "pat-a-cake."

Parent Pointer:
It's so important to talk to your baby! With your help, her coos and gurgles will one day give way to words.

Books and Babies:
For babies from age 6 weeks to 1 year
Sharing books is a way to have fun with your baby and start him on the road to becoming a reader.

Try To Find:
Cardboard or cloth books with large, simple pictures of things that babies are familiar with
Lift-the-flap, touch-and-feel, or peek-through play books (Example: Pat the Bunny by Dorothy Kunhardt is a classic touch-and-feel book.)
What To Do:
Read to your baby for short periods several times a day. Bedtime is always a good time, but you can do it at other times, too while in the park, on the bus, or even at the breakfast table (without the food!).
As you read, point out things that are fun to do in the pictures. Name them as you point to them.
Give your baby sturdy books to look at, touch, and hold. Allow him to peek through the holes or lift the flaps to discover surprises.

Babies soon recognize the faces and voices of those who care for them. As you read to your baby, he will form a link between books and what he loves most your voice and closeness.
Click here to read "Chatting with Children"

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