A baby spends the first year of life learning to listen.A newborn child come s equipped with a finely-tuned pair of ears,
but he doesn’t yet know how to use them.A buzz of meaningless noise surrounds hime.No one sound means more than any other.
Unlike his ears,the hearing center of his brains is still immature.As the baby grows,two things happen.
First,he becomes better at picking out certain sounds.Second,be begings to remember them.
This development is easy to see.If you make a loud sound near a day-old baby’s head,you will not see any reaction.
Only a check on his pulse or breathing rate will show a change.But just two weeks later,the same noise will make hime jerk.
He may even turn his head toward you,now the human voice means something to him.If he hears another baby crying,he may cry.
By his fourth to sixth week,sounds like doorbell or the clothing of a door no longer surprise hime.
What is actually happening is that he is tarting to learn to listen.He can select certain sounds and memorize them.
When he hears that sound again,he can match it with the one he has heard before.These skills are basic to all learning.
At the same time thers early hearing and language skills get under way,the child beging to practice making sounds.
His first sounds are the discomfort sounds.These sounds are heard when he is not quiet or sleeping.
These sounds mean nothing to him yet.To his mother they say he is wet,uncomfortable,or hungry.
Within the baby’s first month,another sound appears:the comfort sounds.These are different from discomfort sounds.
As the child grows,his comfort sounds will mort of the vowels and consonants and rhythms which he will later use.
Thers sounds will come together to form the first word.This special event wil be long remembered by ghe proud parents.