Babies begin to communicate the second they are born - usually with a scream and a cry! However, it's not just about verbal communication, but those harder-to-detect, non-verbal cues they give us to say that they are tired, grumpy or ready to play.
Have you noticed how your baby looks away when they begin to get tired, suggesting that they don't want to play anymore?
If we pay close attention to our babies, we will begin to detect these tiny nuances and begin to understand what they are attempting to tell us.
How CBeebies can help
Many experts believe that teaching your baby to sign is a great way to help communication and reduce the likelihood of tears and tantrums.
It's very annoying when a little one cannot make themselves understood and is incredibly frustrating for them. However, if they are able to do an action with their 'word', then you are much more likely to understand them and generally encourage conversation.
Something Special is one of the best TV shows for helping you and your baby learn sign language. The gestures are simple and often memorable. It's amazing how quickly even young babies of 6 months or so pick up on these signs.
Once you've learnt a few - such as 'lunch', 'sleep', 'milk' - you can incorporate them into your day-to-day routine and interaction with your child. When your little one is due to eat, you sign and say 'lunch' (it doesn't matter if it's breakfast or dinner - that can come later).
The important thing is that there is a gesture that matches a sound and you baby will soon pick up on this. When they are hungry they will say an undoubtedly indistinguishable word - but if accompanied by the sign, you'll know exactly what they mean. There's something very special about understanding your baby's first words.
How to make a magic moment
Conversations are made up of people taking turns to talk.
Babies as young as three months can already join in through simple turn-taking. You say something and pause. They come back with sounds and gestures, then they pause.
And if you stick your tongue out, then put it back and wait, that they will also copy. Amazing!