Experts suggest parents ditch traditional baby talk when teaching communication skills

Posted: Updated:

Childhood experts are suggesting to parents that they ditch traditional baby talk when teaching their young children communication skills.

“They’re like little sponges, so they repeat back to you all the things they’ve been learning,” says Maura Bradley, owner of Bee You Yoga.

New research suggests that the best way to develop a child’s language and cognitive skills is to speak to them using correct grammar and proper word choices.

“But we also want to bring it to a level where they can take it in,” says speech language pathologist Jennifer Tonelli.

Tonelli says that parents should also speak slowly and at a higher pitch – sounds that are more excited and happy.

“If it’s monotone or just too fast, they’re not going to be able to pull that key information they need from it,” Tonelli says.

Experts say that how one communicates with a child is also important.

“With kids, it’s obliviously important to speak their language,” says Bradley. “You don’t want to talk down to kids…mindful when we communicate with people, when we speak with people. These are tools they’ll hopefully use the rest of their lives.”

Experts also recommend using gestures like pointing and sign language to help strengthen children's communication skills.

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