[Source: Medical X Press]
New research from the University of Maryland and Harvard University suggests that young infants benefit from hearing words repeated by their parents. With this knowledge, parents may make conscious communication choices that could pay off in their babies’ toddler years and beyond.
Newman and co-authors HESP Professor Nan Bernstein Ratner and Harvard Associate Professor of Education Meredith L. Rowe tracked maternal-child directed speech to prelinguistic (7-month-old) infants. They specifically measured the infants’ ability to understand language at 7 months, and later the children’s vocabulary outcomes at age 2. They found that the toddlers who had stronger language outcomes differed in two ways from their peers: their parents had repeated words more often, and they were more tuned in to the language as infants, and thus better able to process what was being said.