According to Dr Mike Roizen and Dr Ellen Rome, babies can ping the same way dolphins do to communicate.
This means that a baby will make natural sound and “you will respond back with the ones that make sense to you. So for example an American baby will say Oh, ahh, baba, mamamamama, and the mother will say mamamamama back. From the excitement, the baby learns oh that one was a good one. Let’s do more of that,” says Dr Rome. That is how babies develop that interactive language by responding to you, just as you respond to them.
“If your response is a yell, a yelp or a scream, they will learn from that as well. Just as other mammals, such as monkeys will learn to jump away from the snake, when they see their mother reacting with fear, they learn that pretty quickly. It gets hard-wired very fast”, adds Dr Rome.
If your response is a happy one, with happy noises back, in that sing-song kind of voice, that’s how kids can learn fastest, says Dr Rome.
Communicating from day one
Babies start to communicate right from the moment that they are born.
Crying is your baby’s natural way of telling you that she is either hot, cold, tired, or in need of a cuddle – and is regarded as their first recognisable way of communicating.
The manner in which your baby cries will also help to identify what is wrong. But even though this is the most widely known form of communication, babies communicate in other similarly effective ways.
Did you know that a newborn can differentiate between the sound of a human, and other sounds? Pay attention to how your little one responds to your voice. Your baby already associates this with food, warmth and cuddles.
You will notice your baby pays closer attention when you speak to her in loving tones. She may even smile.
Babies learn about the world from their senses. As time goes on, your baby will get used to seeing your face and will begin to focus on your face. Even though she may not understand what you are saying. Your calm voice will make her feel safe and so will your touch.
Your baby will be intrigued by voices, but none will hold her attention like human voices can. Make sure that you talk to your baby often, even if she doesn’t understand. With every kiss and hug, your newborn learns something new about life, so make sure to keep the kisses and hugs coming.
Always make sure that you respond to your babies cries, and give her as much attention as you can. Responding promptly to your babies cries makes them realise that they are very important and worthy of attention.
As your baby grows she will start to use signs to communicate. She may use different gestures such as pointing to her mouth and crying when she is hungry. She may use different vocal signs to show satisfaction or frustration.
Kicking is also a form of communication with your child. Maybe she wants you to put her down, and she may start kicking in a way to communicate “mommy please put me down.” Sometimes your baby will just gaze into your eyes and smile. This is usually touching for any mom, as you can see the love your child has for you through their eyes.
Your baby may also reach to show that she wants something. Perhaps she is reaching for her Sippy Cup? This would mean that she wants to hold it. Vocal protests or whines can be used when she wants to breastfeed.
Even though babies don’t have words, they have mastered a very effective technique of communication, which allows for interactivity and even conversation.