Does baby speak early smarter or speak late smarter?  Brain science tells you the answer

Does baby speak early smarter or speak late smarter?  Brain science tells you the answer

1 to 3 years old learn to speak

Step by step


 Let's take a look at the key links in language development in children between the ages of 1 and 3:

  • children aged 12-16 months: able to understand 100-150 words, understand simple sentences, respond to received requests, and speak 20-30 words;
  • 16-20 months: can understand 200 words and simple combinations of words, and can speak 50-200 words.Especially at 18 months, there is an explosion of words understanding;
  • children from 20 to 24 months: have begun to understand sentence relationships and language order, as well as the ability to reorganize sounds and express intentions;
  • 24 to 36 months: can understand complex sentences and deduce grammatical structures and rules.

Through these time periods, we can clearly understand the general development law of children's language.


Most babies around 1-year-old can master about 20 words. However, according to individual differences, the language development ability of different children also may be different. It is normal for children of similar age to have a gap in the language development of about half a year.


Baby is at the same age but some speak early and some speak late because of it

Children are at the same age, why speak sooner or later? Why do children differ so much in the depth of their language skills?

Here we will introduce a mysterious part of our brain

Broca's area

Broca's area is one of the most important areas of the brain for language development,responsible for language coding, that is, "speak up."

From the first time the baby calls mom and dad, to become a loudspeaker and chatterbox, every leap in their language ability is closely related to the development of Broca area.

Even children at the same age, the development of the brain is not the same, and the level of development of Broca's area is correspondingly different.

Children who speak early actually have a relatively early Broca's development


late speaker noble or speak early wisdom?

Many parents may ask: Some people say that children who speak earlier are smarter, and some people say that "late speaker noble." Which one is right? In fact, being clever or not is related to the cultivation of the acquired environment and the inheritance of parental intelligence quotient, and it is not possible to conclude directly by talking with the child speak sooner or later. But if you have to talk about their relationship, children who speak early will indeed have a comparative advantage in language skills.

A language is a tool for information acquisition and self-expression, and children who speak early and well are of course faster at receiving information and learning.

If a child's Broca area develops relatively slowly, his language ability does become "relatively delayed."

A 2011 study showed that children with delayed speech were more likely to have problems with literacy, attention and social skills than children with normal language speaking (McLaughlin.2011).

It is beneficial to develop your child's Broca area earlier and help them speak better and earlier.

What should parents do to help children speak early and well?

If you want to stimulate your child's language development, it is important to grasp the golden development period in Broca Area, that is, before the child is 3 years old.

How to do it?

First, you can talk to your baby from infancy.

Studies have shown that the Broca area becomes active when the baby catches some sound during infancy (Dehaene-Lambertz,, 2006).

Second, repeat the stimulus.

Brain experts have found that when infants hear repeated sentences, the Broca area responds more strongly than it does the first time they hear it. This is exactly the opposite of an adult.

Repetition is one of the best ways to help babies learn to speak.

Third, guide your baby to imitate.

Usually, when the baby is only babbling, an expression can make parents understand.

At this time, parents don’t try to keep silent. You can help the baby to say it, for example, “The baby is hungry now, the baby is going to eat vegetables.” “The meal is on the table, the baby is going to eat.”

Keep repeating and imitating. Over time, the baby can express what he wants.

Speak early, repeat, and guide, do you remember these three tips?


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