At about nine months old your baby's babbling is probably starting to sound more like real words. For example, she may say "mama" and "dada".
Don't get too excited just yet though, as she probably doesn't connect the sounds "mama" and "dada" with mum and dad at this age. They are just a couple of the many sounds she's trying out as she finds her voice.
You can help your little one at this early stage by talking to her clearly and often. The conversations may seem one-way at first but your baby will soon catch up and gurgle or laugh and smile in response.
Explore your baby's world with her, pointing out interesting things on walks and outings. Switching off unnecessary background noise such as the TV and radio can make it easier for her to hear and understand you.
By the time your baby is 12 months old she will probably use the words "mama" and "dada" and know exactly what she's saying. However, she may also still babble short sentences that sound like she's fluent in a foreign language!
Reading to your toddler, describing what you're doing around the house and asking her lots of questions will all help to develop her vocabulary. Don’t be tempted to correct her early pronunciation of words but do repeat them back to her clearly so she can learn from you.
Between 12 months and 18 months your child will take more of an interest in words. She will have a vocabulary of between six and 20 words, although she will understand many more.
By the time your child is two she may know as many as 200 words (although she may only use around 50 of these). She may also be able to form two-to three-word sentences.
Nursery rhymes, songs and simple games like “Simon says” can help your child learn to formulate simple sentences and understand how to take turns in conversation. She's also discovering that learning to talk is fun!
By the time your child turns three, she will be a more sophisticated talker. Her words will be easier to understand and she will be able to have a longer conversation with you.
Bear in mind that babies develop differently, some more quickly than others.
If you're concerned about your baby's development, talk to your GP or health visitor.