Infants typically begin to vocalize syllables (e.g., “ma ma ma” or “ba da goo”) at around 6 to 11 months of age. Grownups are often delighted when they hear their little one begin to coo and babble! You can be your baby’s “sound play partner” by singing or reciting familiar Mother Goose rhymes. Be amazed as your infant takes pleasure in hearing funny, rhyming verses.
- lyrics to your favorite Mother Goose Rhymes
Step 1: When your infant is awake and responding to his environment by “cooing” and “babbling,” respond to him by matching his sounds and saying them back to him.
Step 2: Choose a favorite rhyming verse that has a lot of funny sound combinations like “knick-knack paddy whack” or “piggy wiggly.” While you have your baby’s face-to-face attention, recite the rhyme to him. For example, you might say…
Higglety Pigglety, Pop,
The dog has eaten the mop.
The pig’s in a hurry,
The cat’s in a flurry,
Higglety, Pigglety, Pop!
Step 3: Be sure to use a variety of vocal intonation patterns. Your baby will be curious about the funny sounds you are saying and may even try to imitate some.
Step 4: Sound play can be even more exciting when you draw attention to the sounds that make up your baby’s name. For example, “Kevin” can become “Kevin Levin.”
Step 5: Repeat the sound play activity for as long as your infant shows enjoyment from the activity.