Phonological Development

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  • Children spend the first year of their lives learning to recognize the sounds of the words and phrases of their native language (or languages) and developing enough control over their mouths, vocal cords, and breathing so that they can begin to make the articulatory movements and the vocal cord vibrations needed to produce these words and phrases. Before children can speak, they produce speechlike sounds, or babble. Babbling and listening to the resulting sounds gives children the experience they need to connect their mouth movements with the sounds those movements create, and that experience provides the foundation for figuring out how to make the specific speech sounds of the adult language around them. Children may start to talk before the end of their first year, ...

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