Baby Language Development: Cooing, Laughing & Imitating
Hearing your baby imitate a laugh or a silly sound you make is one of the most exciting "firsts" that you experience. Cooing (which is just vowel sounds) and laughing begin between 2 to 3 months of age for most newborns. These are the earliest forms of imitation for your baby, and he will begin to laugh especially in response to your laughter or tickles.
More precise imitation begins between 4 and 6 months of age when you can actually make a game of making a noise or blowing "raspberries" back and forth. Around 6 months of age is when babbling begins, which is the addition of consonants and those coveted words "da-da" (unfairly, the first for most babies) and "ma-ma" appear. You can help teach your baby these imitation games by copying what he does so if he is saying "ah, ah" over and over, repeat it back to him. You will get his attention quickly and will make him realize this is a new fun game. Teaching your child the fun of imitation games is an important part of baby language development as so much of early learning is copying what his family does.