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Babies can learn grammar rules

Children grow up very quickly. And they also learn very quickly! It has yet to be researched how children learn. Learning processes take place automatically. Children don't notice when they are learning. Nevertheless, every day they are capable of more. This also becomes clear with language. Babies can only cry in the first few months. With a few months they can say short words. Then sentences are created from those words. Eventually the children speak their native language. Unfortunately, that doesn't work in the case of adults. They need books or other material in order to learn. Only this way can they learn grammar rules, for example. Babies, however, learn grammar as early as four months old! Researchers taught German babies foreign grammar rules. In order to do this, they played Italian sentences aloud to them. These sentences contained certain syntactical structures. The babies listened to the correct sentences for about fifteen minutes. Afterwards, sentences were played for the babies again. This time, however, a few of the sentences were incorrect. While the babies listened to the sentences, their brainwaves were measured. This way the researchers could identify how the brain reacted to sentences. And the babies showed different levels of activity with the sentences! Although they had just learned them, they registered the mistakes. Naturally, babies do not understand why some sentences are wrong. They orient themselves toward phonetic patterns. But that is enough to learn a language – at least for babies…

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