Answer your baby’s goos and gahs
When your baby coos or babbles, answer back. You can copy her sounds. Or say something simple like “That’s right” or “I know.” This helps your baby learn how to listen and speak back and forth with someone in a conversation.
Name facial expressions
This helps your child learn emotions. Does your baby smile or get excited when it’s time for applesauce? Say out loud to her “You like fruit!” Does he cry if he drops his toy? You might gently say “You are sad because you lost your rattle.”
Tell baby what you’re doing
Talk as you’re feeding, dressing or bathing your baby. Talking during normal routines helps your baby learn familiar words. “Time to wash your feet. Is Mama tickling your toes?”
Music makes language come alive. Nursery rhymes make words easier to remember. Feeling shy? Think you can’t sing? It doesn’t matter. Your baby loves your voice. Singing brings you closer together.
Describe what baby is doing.
Think of it as play-by-play commentary. Label their toys, gestures, or actions. “You like tummy time. Good job pushing up with your arms!” Or “You are reaching for the ball. Can you roll the ball with your hand?”
Describe what you see
Point out things when you’re on a walk. “That is a very tall tree.” “Two people are waiting for the bus.” Or at the grocery story. “These apples are round and red.” Any activity will do.
Repeat simple words like “dada” and “mama” often. Say them clearly. Your baby will start to learn words that she hears a lot. She will also learn what they mean. When it’s time for a bedtime story you might say, “Let’s cuddle now and read a book. Book. Dada likes to read books.”