Help your little one master the art of conversation
By chatting to your baby from the moment they arrive, you'll help them to understand the idea of a conversation. Once your child can say around 100 individual words, he or she will start to put short sentences together. This normally happens around the age of two.
Here are some starting points for helping your toddler to talk.
Start looking at books with your baby from an early age. You don't have to read the words, just talk to your little one about what you can see.
Show & tell
Point out things to your toddler when you see them, for example, 'there's a car.' Then add more detail, 'there's a blue car.'
Music to your ears
Nursery rhymes and simple songs are a great way for children to learn as the rhythm helps the words to sink in.
If you start to repeat the sounds your baby makes back to them, your baby will learn to copy you.
Speak their language
Use short, simple sentences. Once your little one starts talking, use sentences that are one or two words longer than their own.
You can help encourage them to talk and increase their vocabulary by giving them choices, for example, 'would you like an apple or a banana?'
Over to you
Give your little one the chance to talk whenever or wherever you can such as in the bath or the car. Prompt them by asking them simple questions.
Right from wrong
If your child is trying to say a word but gets it wrong, say the word in full, but don't tell them off for giving it a try!
Take it in turns
Playing games where you have to take turns, for example Round and Round the Garden, will also help their language to develop.
The last word
Try to restrict their use of a dummy until bedtime as it's harder to learn to talk when you have a dummy in your mouth!