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#1 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 02:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I mean, you talking baby talk?

My son is 13 months old, and i think I can stretch it until this next baby is born. But we were messing around with our cell phones a few days ago, and I just listened to a 7 minute recording of me having a 'conversation' with my son. It's almost incomprehensible. Does baby talk harm speech development?

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#2 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 02:48 PM
 
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I think birth is too old for baby talk. I'm just NOT a fan of it, at all. We don't use it in our house. When DS was a little baby, I would say more baby-ish things (like, "You are so cute! Yes you are! So cute!") in a soft/sweet voice, but I never used words like "wittle" for little or anything like that.

I think if you're just using a soft/sweet voice, repetitive and descriptive conversation, you are fine. If you're changing real words to baby-ish words, it's probably time to stop, so that your son will hear the correct pronunciation as he begins to talk. That's just my non-expert opinion though.

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#3 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 02:57 PM
 
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I think birth is too old for baby talk.
I agree.

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#4 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 03:16 PM
 
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We never spoke baby talk. We talked to my DD as though she understood normal speech patterns from birth.

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#5 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 03:56 PM
 
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We've never used baby talk either. Our voice/pitch did change when DD was little but that's about it. We do use some of DD's words, though, because it's really hard not to when she says them so often (so yogurt smoothies have officially become "purple yogurt" at our house ).
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#6 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 08:11 PM
 
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I've always pretty much just talked to DS as I would to anyone else, as has DH. But I do tend to talk in third person to him sometimes ("Mommy is going to take a shower now"), I don't know why, he seems to grasp it better than when I say "I"???

I guess I don't understand baby talk & always need a translation when other people talk like that...

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#7 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 08:42 PM
 
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Originally Posted by crunchy_mommy View Post
I've always pretty much just talked to DS as I would to anyone else, as has DH. But I do tend to talk in third person to him sometimes ("Mommy is going to take a shower now"), I don't know why, he seems to grasp it better than when I say "I"???
Pronouns are pretty tricky for little kids. Certainly you can use them, but it's a big concept that when you (Mom) say 'I' he has to interpret it not as himself, but as someone else, however, when he says 'I' it means himself.

Saying 'Mommy is doing this,' as narrative is easier for them.

We have a few odd words that sneak in, but for the most part we don't use much baby talk, and never have. We're more rigid about it now as DS1 is involved with pretty intense speech therapy as we help him to use language. If you found the baby talk fairly incomprehensible, I would gently suggest that it's time to segue to more adult speech as your son is making those connections now, and hearing the correct words and rhythms of speech is very important.
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#8 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 08:46 PM
 
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I don't understand why people don't like baby talk. My understanding is that baby talk is an instinctive thing and that it helps children with language development rather than hinder it. Anyway, to the OP, I would just do what comes naturally. I don't think there's a right or wrong answer.
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#9 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 08:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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ouch! ok, it looks like I need to at least tone it down a bit. I'm honestly not sure where it comes from-- I never thought I'd be a big baby talker. I definitely don't want to do anything that will confuse ds further.

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#10 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 08:55 PM
 
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I don't understand why people don't like baby talk. My understanding is that baby talk is an instinctive thing and that it helps children with language development rather than hinder it. Anyway, to the OP, I would just do what comes naturally. I don't think there's a right or wrong answer.
I've seen research from both sides. My understanding is that the sing-song quality of baby talk is a positive, but distortion of words is not. For example, elongating the sounds in a word, 'loooook, it's a caaaat' and saying it with lyrical tone is positive, but shortening or changing words, 'wookie iz a kwitty kat!' is detrimental.

Our SLP really emphasizes using proper terms from the get go- though she also uses a very exaggerated tone as she does so.
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#11 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 08:59 PM
 
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The only research I have read regarding baby talk is that it's pretty natural and something that most of us are just hardwired to do. I don't see how it would be confusing to a kid unless you always spoke in baby talk and never progressed in your conversations with him. I would bet that the way you speak to him now is different than the way you spoke 2, 4, 6 months ago.

I would really just go with the flow on this and not overthink it. 13 months is still pretty little IMO. It's only pretty recently that I started saying "water" and not "wawa" to my son - for some reason that was a baby talk holdout. I still refer to myself in the third person quite a bit, though I am trying to use the pronoun "I" more often.

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#12 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 09:37 PM
 
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I don't understand why people don't like baby talk. My understanding is that baby talk is an instinctive thing and that it helps children with language development rather than hinder it.
I think I personally just don't understand it... maybe I'm missing that 'instinct' lol!! It just would never occur to me to call water 'wawa' or little 'wittle' or use words like binkie (or is it blinkie???) and baba (I hear them all the time but have no idea what either means???)

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#13 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 09:59 PM
 
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Well, lately with DD I've been realizing how dumb DH and I sound.

Sometimes it seems the only thing we can think of to say to her is, "Hi....Hi there...Hii..." in the sing-song, higher pitched voice. I think it's because when she smiles we kind of melt and our brains go dead.

We never used baby-talk when it came to words. We do use higher pitched voices and emphasize or stretch certain sounds.

We've picked up certain words from our DS: Sockies (Socks) and Choo-choos (trains, although he can say trains perfectly he just prefers to use the sound effect word) He knows the correct words for these things though but he just came up with his own variation and prefers to use it.

I don't believe we've ever made up words or distorted them. We're both a little put off by it when others do it so maybe it's just a personal preference.

Just thought of this: My grandmother actually uses stereotypical "baby-talk". She will ALWAYS say, "Goo goo ga ga.." and so on to our babies for the first YEAR. I have no idea why she does it but the kids always seem to get a kick out of it.

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#14 of 37 Old 10-25-2010, 10:28 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah... I think I do sound pretty silly. I switch words around as in:

"Oh baby waby, you know mama loves you up-es! Yesh she does! She loves you so much-es! But you can't kicky mama no mores because deres a sistah in her tums! Yuppers!".

Totally nutty, cannot stop myself.

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#15 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 01:42 AM
 
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We never spoke baby talk. We talked to my DD as though she understood normal speech patterns from birth.

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#16 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 01:53 AM
 
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Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
I don't understand why people don't like baby talk. My understanding is that baby talk is an instinctive thing and that it helps children with language development rather than hinder it. Anyway, to the OP, I would just do what comes naturally. I don't think there's a right or wrong answer.
I would say that there is a significant difference between incomprehensible speech (which the OP seems to have been using) and motherese or parentese. The former involves making up words rather than using the actual words. The latter has more to do with speaking in a somewhat simplified and repititve way (but still mimicking actual conversational flow).

http://www.education.com/reference/a...uage-learning/

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#17 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 03:24 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Artichokie View Post
We never spoke baby talk. We talked to my DD as though she understood normal speech patterns from birth.
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#18 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 10:15 AM
 
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I agree with the person that said it should stop at birth. I never ever spoke baby talk with my son. He's bilingual, has been speaking in sentences since 15 months, had a vocabulary of hundreds of words by then. I don't think he would have been able to do this when I had spoken babytalk with him, "because he was little". I did use less complicated sentences, with a lot of repetition. "Look, there is a dog. A big black dog."
I also feel it is disrespectful to a child to talk babytalk, as if I wouldn't value his opinions, his intellect, he being a real person, with thoughts and feelings.
Just my 2 cents..
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#19 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 10:19 AM
 
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I used baby talk (or "motherese" apparently) with my older dd, and she was also very very advanced with language. Some things are not controlled by what we do. My younger dd is somewhat advanced but not like my first was.
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#20 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 11:54 AM
 
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I don't distort words to the point of being "baby talk", but I definitely add "y" to everything. We "flushy" the toilet and say birdy, kitty, doggy instead of bird, cat or dog. We also "brusha brusha brusha" our teeth and "scrubba scrubba scrubba" our hands. I don't think that's detrimental to my son's language development, but who knows.

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#21 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 12:10 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mamazee View Post
I don't understand why people don't like baby talk. My understanding is that baby talk is an instinctive thing and that it helps children with language development rather than hinder it. Anyway, to the OP, I would just do what comes naturally. I don't think there's a right or wrong answer.
This. We had extensive "speech" therapy from birth and high-pitched, silly, funny, sweet talking is totally developmentally appropriate and it comes naturally for a reason. The more annoying it is to adults, the more baby likes it, it seems. For most parents you make the adjustment to more age-appropriate speaking quite naturally. Are you using all made-up, gibberish or are you referring to the high-pitched voice you are using to say normal words? Either way, I wouldn't sweat it. I wasn't comfortable using too many nonsense words, so I didn't.

I put "speech" in quotes because my son needed help eating for months because of 7 weeks on a ventilator and 4 months on an ng tube, just wanted to clarify for anyone who didn't realize that we weren't trying to get our kiddo to talk from birth He was expected to have severe issues with talking too, so we were being very proactive. The folks who helped our son learn to suck-swallow-breathe were speech therapists.
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#22 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 12:14 PM
 
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I think I personally just don't understand it... maybe I'm missing that 'instinct' lol!! It just would never occur to me to call water 'wawa' or little 'wittle' or use words like binkie (or is it blinkie???) and baba (I hear them all the time but have no idea what either means???)
I never used baby words, but I said normal words in a way I would NEVER use with an adult. Like in a sing-songy way, or repetitively etc. Now that I think about it, I guess I did change words to make them silly.

I think some of this comes if you are around new little talkers, those baby words are how kiddos say them when they are first talking...maybe if your one-year-old is saying them, you naturally use them with your baby?
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#23 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 12:15 PM
 
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We don't use baby talk. Not like we decided we wouldn't use it or anything...we just don't talk that way . My MIL was here recently and she was over the top using baby talk with our 3 year old. He talks well and she was using baby talk for words that he says perfectly. But I don't think it is too big a deal and just let it slide. In the big parenting picture, I don't think baby talk is all that huge, even though I find it really, really annoying . I make use of little funny faces when I post on MDC though ....hmmmm

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#24 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 02:04 PM
 
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When DS was an infant, we used a sing sony tone of voice and raised our pitch a bit. I don't know when we stopped doing that... but I will say that it has always irked me when people use that tone of voice with young children/older toddlers. i.e. there was a teacher's assistant at a preschool I used to work at who would constantly say things like "oooh! that's so sweet!" in this really high pitched, cutesy voice when she talked to the kids. Everything she said to them was in that tone of voice... 3 and 4 year olds... I always thought it sounded really patronizing. Yes, you simplify what your saying, to make it age appropriate... but they're not babies.

With DS (2.5) we use a normal tone of voice with a simplified vocab and lots of explanation. But we also use some of his "toddler words" that we think are cute and have become part of our family vocabulary... my favorite one is bike-a-cycle instead of bicycle. We also refer to peanut butter sandwiches as "peanut butter round bread" because that's how ds asks for a peanut butter sandwich (he loves those sandwich rounds). I personally don't think that use of some "family vocabulary" like that is harmful. We do use the proper terms enough and he has other outside exposure to the proper terms, that I think he'll work it out.

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#25 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 03:33 PM
 
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Barring multilingual issues, a neurodevelopmentally normal child is going to learn to talk eventually no matter what. I can't imagine that 'baby talk' would have any kind of lasting negative impact on language acquisition.

It doesn't come naturally to me to use baby talk (although I do, like others on here, change my intonation and inflection somewhat) so I don't. But I can't imagine it's harmful.

Is it possible that your kid could have a more advanced vocabulary at, say 15 months if you regularly use a more adult vocabulary with him vs 'baby talk'? Sure. Is that going to matter 5 years down the road? I seriously doubt it.

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#26 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 03:41 PM
 
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It doesn't come naturally to me to use baby talk (although I do, like others on here, change my intonation and inflection somewhat) so I don't. But I can't imagine it's harmful.

Is it possible that your kid could have a more advanced vocabulary at, say 15 months if you regularly use a more adult vocabulary with him vs 'baby talk'? Sure. Is that going to matter 5 years down the road? I seriously doubt it.
I never used it- it just didn't come naturally to me. My first son was a very early and very articulate talker. I've often wondered if there was a connection, but no, I don't condemn other parents for using baby talk, it's just not for me. I don't plan on using baby talk for this little one, either. I just can't get into it.

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#27 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 03:49 PM
 
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If you have to call his cell and leave a message because he's in a college class then he's too old for baby talk.

I used it with my very early talking, very articulate, huge vocabulary DD1, and i'm still doing it with DD2. I'm more worried about how to STOP my kids talking
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#28 of 37 Old 10-26-2010, 03:54 PM
 
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I hate baby talk. I use real words and my real vocabulary with babies and children. I do use a silly tone and make silly sounds and faces with them because it is playful and fun.
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#29 of 37 Old 10-27-2010, 11:55 AM
 
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We've never done baby talk. We would slow down & repeat words or phrases when necessary, still do, and altered the pitch of our voices for babies, but talked normally.
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#30 of 37 Old 10-27-2010, 01:34 PM
 
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Originally Posted by crunchy_mommy View Post
I think I personally just don't understand it... maybe I'm missing that 'instinct' lol!! It just would never occur to me to call water 'wawa' or little 'wittle' or use words like binkie (or is it blinkie???) and baba (I hear them all the time but have no idea what either means???)
( binkie=pacifier, baba=bottle)
I know what you mean. I'll use dd's words for stuff, but then also model the standard word.

E.g. "you're wearing your poke-its dress? Yes, it does have polka dots!"

The only time I'll use extensive baby talk is when talking to other adults about baby stuff. Like "izzn't dat the mostest pwecious widdle coatsey ever??"
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