When does your child know what you’re saying? Every parent goes through the same thing when they think their child knows what they’re saying.
It usually starts a few days after the child gets home from the hospital. Then, you swear to yourself that they know exactly what you’re talking about for months before they do.
Yes, you’re the one who’s convinced that your child knows what you are saying. Your child, well, they’re paying attention to something else entirely, and we’ll talk about that in a bit.
Babies recognize their names at about 4 1/2 months
Some say that babies listen to the world around them when they’re in their mother’s womb. There’s probably some truth to that. Though, it’s not known how much they recognize at this early stage in their life.
It’s safe to say if anything they understand voices and the emotions of mom. But, beyond that, it’s hard to imagine that a baby would know much else.
It’s believed that by the time a child is 4 1/2 months old that they recognize their name if it’s said to them. It makes sense that a baby would realize something that was said to them repeatedly every day, such as their name.
A one-year-old has a surprising vocabulary
A one-year-old child has a vocabulary of about 50 words. Think about that for a second. Your one year old knows 50 words, but yet can’t speak any of them. That means they grasp all kinds of things and situations that you had no idea.
All this time you were worried about your smartphone spying on you, and it’s been the baby. They know what you’re saying, even if their vocabulary is so small. They listen to what you have to say and learn every time someone has a conversation around them.
The vocabulary explosion begins at around 18 to 21 months
Suddenly, out of nowhere, your child understands what you say at an alarming rate. Are they between the ages of 18 and 21? If so, your child is probably going through what some call a language explosion.
This is where they are learning up to nine words per day. Their brains are associating words with things. Before, the words were just that, words. Now, the words have meaning, and their brains are learning at a supercharged pace.
Let’s turn our attention to a surprising factor of learning language
A child begins to associate emotion and tone of voice long before they understand words.
Why is this important? It’s important because you want to understand that a child at the early stages of its life until the point it begins to talk will pay close attention to how things are said.
Even if they don’t know what you’re saying, they know how you’re saying it. This is so important as it’s an introduction to human behavior to them.
They don’t need to know what you’re saying to understand what the intended consequence is. That’s the vital thing to take away here is that they are hearing how you say it and coming to a conclusion about what you’re saying.
Pay close attention to how you say things
Couples have spats and disagreements all the time. No one is immune to being grumpy or having the intense desire to raise your voice. However, you must keep your emotions in check around your child during these pivotal times of their development.
Sure, a six-month-old can’t understand that you’re arguing about who should be doing the laundry.
They can, however, tell what’s going on by your tone of voice. What can you do about it? Chill out. Don’t fight. Somehow figure out a way to get the laundry done without arguing about it.
So many of the situations that lead to arguments can be solved by working through things. You nip things in the bud long before the situation turns into an argument.
Language has a way of progressing
If you’re a new parent, then you don’t know the process. It’s wonderful to listen to your child babble until they learn how to talk. Don’t be in a hurry and try to force the situation.
The process of learning how to talk is kind of like the sweet smell a baby has when they’re eating only milk. You don’t realize how sweet that smell is until they begin to eat food.
The scent is gone, and so with it are the memories of that phase of their life. So is true when it comes to talking. You so desperately want to hear words come out of their mouth.
Enjoy listening to them babble and make some recordings of it so you can enjoy it later. Unlike their scent as a baby, you can preserve their babbling so it can be enjoyed for generations to come.