Babies can remember words parents-to-be speak to them when they’re in the womb, according to a new study.
Mums and dads who talk and sing to their unborn baby are giving them a head start in their language skills, says the report.
New research by the University of Helsinki in Finland reveals that the brains of babies are learning language skills before they’ve left the womb.
In the study, the foetuses were exposed to a recording of the made-up Finnish word ‘tatata’.
Half of the women in the group didn’t play the recording, while the other half of the group played it hundreds of times from the 29th week of pregnancy until birth.
According to the study, the babies that were exposed to this word ‘showed an enhanced reaction to this specific word.’
“It is a sign of very early language learning, or adaptation to the sounds they heard,” said Professor Huotilainen, of the University of Helsinki, which conducted the study.
He argued that foetuses begin to pick up sounds and words from about halfway through the pregnancy.
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Experts believe this is a big advancement in the world of child language skills.
“It's really quite amazing that the fetal brain has that capacity,” said Patricia Kuhl, speech researcher from the University of Washington.
So parents, if you want your baby to say ‘mum’ or ‘dad’ first, it sounds like you need to get in there quick!
Did you talk to your baby in the womb? Tell us over on Twitter now.