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By 8 months, your child may start to:

  • Babble consonant sounds, such as m, b, d
  • Respond to their name
  • String vowel sounds together, that sound like eh, oh, ah
  • Respond when spoken to and respond back with sounds
  • Make sounds that are tied to emotions, like frustration or happiness
  • Understand basic words they hear frequently throughout their day


This is the sign for eat. Most of our toddlers have mastered some form of this sign and we use it frequently throughout their day – indicating when it is time to go the table, in conjunction with the sign for more and/or when sitting with them at a meal and talking to them about what they are doing. We try to use it multiple times throughout a meal – for instance, “it is time to eat" "do you want to eat" "lets eat another bite".


The benefits of sign language for babies are numerous and well worth the time to learn some of the basics to give a baby a small step forward in their language acquisition. Teaching them signs helps them start to communicate before they have the words to do so, it lessens tantrums and frustrations when they can get needs and wants met, it enhances bonding between caregivers and the infants, it boosts cognitive skills, and overall, it lessens the adults’ frustrations when they can understand what their child is trying to tell them.

It has also been found that by teaching babies sign language, it enhances future vocabulary rather than causing a delay. Signing is just one more skill in an ever-growing developmental ladder that babies can start to try on their own as early as 8-9 months. Helping our smallest is the key to help them to continue to move forward with so many new words just out there waiting for them to learn them.

Fun fact about babies –

babies laugh (after they have learned this skill) approximately 300 times a day compared to an adults 60 times, showing how much babies love life and enjoy everything around them.