“Baby talk” helps develop language and social skills

MARCS BabyLab researcher Christine Kitamura recently appeared on Channel 9's TODAY, to discuss baby talk.

Dr Kitamura's research has found that the tone that adults use in front of babies helps develop the child's language and social skills.

"It's about communication, we are trying to communicate to a young child that can't talk, and can't answer us, so we do that because we get a response from them," Dr Kitamura told TODAY.

The study's findings show baby talk allows babies to tell their mothers what they want, and that parents should change their tones depending on the child's age. Research of 72 babies at MARCS BabyLab found that babies at certain ages responded better to different vocal tones.

Dr Kitamura's research has indicated that mothers' talk to three month old babies with a "comforting voice", before progressing to "affectionate and approving tones" at the age of six months, and finally using "directive tones" at nine months of age.

You can find out more about research conducted at MARCS BabyLab by visiting our research page.