While many people think speech and language development begins with a child's first words, learning to communicate actually begins at birth. The parts of the brain that are involved in speech and language development are stimulated by the sounds and words that a baby hears. Very early on, babies learn to relate certain sounds with certain people, objects and events. Interactions such as these are vital to the development of communication skills. Some parents become concerned if their child doesn't seem to be developing speech or language skills at the same rate as other children. It's important to realize that every child is different and develops at his or her own rate.