1. MAKE EYE CONTACT

Gaze into your newborn’s eyes. Within a week, infants can recognise their parents’ faces, and every time he stares at you he is building his memory and learning how to recognise facial expressions.

2. USE THE RIGHT TONE

That baby-friendly, higher-pitched tone that many parents instinctively use has a purpose. It helps baby’s brain learn language by making the vowel sounds more distinct, and the higher pitch is easier for a baby to imitate.

3. NARRATE YOUR DAY

Talk to your baby – a lot. Research has shown that the greater number of words children hear from their parents and caregivers before age 3, the higher their IQ. Tell them what you are doing, what you are thinking and what they are seeing.

4. POINT YOUR FINGER

Research shows that children learn language faster if you point to an object while saying the word

5. COUNT ALOUD

When you wash your baby’s hands and feet in the tub, count his fingers and toes aloud. Count his toys with him, or, when he is older, the Cheerios he is learning to self-feed. Soon enough, he will join in.

6. GIVE HER A CHOICE

Even a 3- to 5-month-old baby has opinions. Show her two books or two toys and watch which one she seems drawn to look at or touch, Clinard says.