Sunday, February 5, 2012

Baby Talk by Elisabeth Arnold

Some parents believe that talking to your baby like they are an adult is the right thing to do, so that they won’t talk like a baby themselves when they get a little bit older.  However, this is not the case, when you talk to a baby it is good to use “baby talk”, it is high pitched so it is funny and keeps their attention better, it has exaggerated expression and it has clear pronunciation, and there are many pauses.  This keeps the baby interested in you and what you are saying so they are more likely to pay attention and learn from you.  If you talk to them like they are an adult, it is boring and they do not care what you have to say.  When I was in middle school, my friends’ mother had a baby, and I would always talk to him like he was a baby and talk in the high pitched voice.  They always got mad at me and told me to talk to him like he was an adult.  The child is now 8 years old and talks like he is about 3.  He was never exposed to the “baby talk” when he was really young, so now that is how he talks all the time.  I think it is important to talk to your baby in “baby talk” while they are young so they learn from you. 


  1. I really liked this because it just reinforced what i was taught by my mother and grandmother. They told me to always talk to my son after he was born. He was a newborn and i would sit him in his carrier, up on the kitchen cabinet while i did the dishes. I would talk to him about, dishes, clothes, etc. I did it in a voice i thought would keep his attention, and i often thought if someone could hear me talk about random things in a "babytalk" voice they would probably think i was crazy! But I've always talked to my babies and i feel it helped them because they knew my voice so well they hardly ever cried. I was able to talk them down while I changed their diaper or fixed a bottle. I think i was able to do it so well because I had been talking to them since birth.

    1. Sorry the last post about babytalk was by Zara Foley. I just forgot to put my name

  2. I also have heard that talking to your baby like a baby was frowned upon, not only is it very difficult not to but its boring not to. I agree that its good to talk to your baby in baby talk because it keeps their attention and its good to see their different reactions, i think it could be reasuring to a parent to see that your baby is responding how they should to certain soudns and facial expressions. Even as an adult, who wants to hear someone talking monotone its dule i can only imagine how a baby feels.

  3. I agree talking to a baby in a high pitched voice is appropriate. However, I do not believe in talking to them in babble and cooing. I think they need to hear what words really sound like. I was like Zara. I sat my girls on the counter or in a high chair when I was in the kitchen and talked to them about everything. If I was cooking, I would show them an item I was using, such as an egg, and tell them about it. This was a great learning and interaction time for us.
    Susan Davis