Babies cry in their mother tongue

November 9, 2009 at 7:31 am | Posted in Lifescape | Leave a comment
clipped from

Times Online

Study shows unborn babies cry in their mother tongue

Babies start to pick up language in the womb
Now research carried out in Germany suggests that babies develop a capacity
for language much earlier than was previously thought. “Our study shows the
importance of crying for seeding language development,” said Professor
Kathleen Wermke, who led the research at the University of Würzburg.
clipped from

Prenatal exposure

Prenatal exposure to language was known to influence newborns. For
instance, past research showed they preferred their mother’s voice over
those of others.

Imitating Mom

The way babies imitate melody patterns relies just on a command over
their voiceboxes they had before birth, instead of the more advanced
control of their vocal tracts they need for vowel sounds. As such, they
can begin mimicking their mothers “at that early age,” said researcher
Kathleen Wermke, a medical anthropologist at the University of Würzburg
in Germany.

clipped from

clipped from

Current Biology

Newborns’ Cry Melody Is Shaped by Their Native Language

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