A Baby is sleeping on the Bed
The ladies above 50 years old have 49.6 percent possibility to conceive with a donor egg. Reuters

Talking to babies makes them start using language earlier, a new study shows.

The study, published in Child Language Teaching and Therapy, examined data from the Growing Up in Ireland study in which 7,845 babies, around nine months of age, were studied and the factors that could affect child development such as breastfeeding, maternal education, gestational age and interactions with siblings were controlled.

It was found that reading to babies improved their problem-solving and communication skills, while showing them pictures improved their communication skills but did not affect their problem-solving abilities.

However, talking to children absent-mindedly, as one would do with a friend, was far better than either reading to them or talking in drills with some ulterior purpose of teaching them language.

A study in 2014 showed that infants whose parents babble with them learn language faster. When parents listen and respond to babies' babbling, the infants start to form complex sounds faster, according to the study that observed 12 mothers and their infants during free play for half an hour at a time, twice a month, over a period of six months. The babies were eight months old when the study began. The study was published in the journal Infancy.

Research led by the University of Iowa indicated that infants whose parents weren't making a significant effort to understand their babbling learned to speak at a slower pace than those infants whose parents made an effort to understand their speech. The study concluded that it wasn't responsiveness alone that mattered but that it was important how parents responded to their babies' babbling. At a very early age, children are learning how to learn and their sensitivity to different things can be shaped.

These studies contradict the notion that babbling with children harms them. In fact, research done at Carnegie Mellon University indicates that baby talk or babbling makes it easier for babies to understand and pronounce speech while teaching linguistic concepts faster.

To contact the writer, email: sonali.raj@gmail.com