The Importance of Baby Talking with Infants
We parents love to baby talk with our little ones. They look into our eyes and gleam with joy and try to respond to our talk with tiny gestures and sounds. Yes! Baby talking is crucial for the development of speech in children. A new study suggests that when parents baby talk to their infants, they might be helping them learn to produce speech.
Matthew Masapollo, Ph.D., an assistant professor in University of Florida's Department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences, and director of the UF Laboratory for the Study of Cognition, Action, and Perception of Speech in the College of Public Health and Health Professions says that baby talk seems to stimulate motor production of speech, not just the perception of speech. Studies showed that infants between 6 and 8 months of age displayed a robust and distinct preference for speech with resonances specifying a vocal tract that is similar in size and length to their own. By recognizing small voices we are making them learn how the sounds and words are coming out of their mouth.
So, let’s talk more with infants. Seeing them respond to our talks fills our hearts with joy as well as enables them a step further to produce speech sounds.