How dads talk to baby makes a difference

Moms, we’ve heard it, and done it: we tell Baby how cuuute and precious those itty-bitty toes are, yes, they are!  And it’s an octave higher than when we talk to our friends about lunch plans or the horrible commute. Dads, on the other hand, might think those toes are equally precious, they’re  just not going to say it that way.

New research from a Washington State University-Spokane assistant professor looked at how moms and dads talk to their babies and found that men used more adult speech patterns, while women used more baby talk, also called “motherese.”

Researcher Mark VanDam, an assistant professor in the speech and hearing sciences department, said both kinds of talk are important.

“We think that the fathers are doing things that are conducive to their children’s learning but in a different way,” VanDam told The Seattle Times. “Moms provide the link to the intimate or the domestic. Dads provide a link to the outside world.”

So along with that tie or coffee mug this Father’s Day, don't forget to thank Dad for giving the little ones a well-rounded start in life.

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