Have you ever noticed how babies and young children often stare into the faces of people they see? That is because babies’ brains are hardwired to learn from interactions with people.
Young children need to repeatedly hear the sounds of language in order to form critically important neural connections in their brains. Babies build those connections by carefully observing the people around them. In this way, they eventually make important connections between sounds, words, and the meanings conveyed. This is one of the very first steps in the long process of learning language, and ultimately, learning to read.
So the next time you notice a baby staring at you, stare right back. Talk slowly and clearly and feel good knowing that you are helping a child take a few baby steps on the road to learning language.