6-month-olds can understand words

Do you have a baby at home? Then, be careful what you say, as they can understand meanings of words at least six months earlier than previously thought.

Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania found that infants as young as six months learn the meanings of words for foods and body parts months before they speak those words.

And if parents speak to them normally it could improve their language skills later on, researchers said.

The findings, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences , confounds traditional scientific thinking that babies start to grasp their meaning at about a year old.

It was thought that children of that age could understand elements of the sound of their own native language but not connect the sounds to meanings.

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