Self-Talk and Parallel-Talk are two strategies that are great to help develop speech and language skills in any setting! Let’s talk about the difference and examples of what to say! 

 When implementing self-talk, narrate what you are doing, eating, touching, seeing, or thinking when your child is not only present but seems interested as well. For this strategy, you will narrate your actions!   As an Early Intervention speech therapist, we begin teaching this behavior at an early age.

Example of self-talk: “I’m cooking! I’m making pizza. I need more cheese. I found the cheese. Yummy!” 

When implementing parallel-talk, narrate what your child is doing, eating, touching, or seeing. For this strategy you will narrate only your child’s actions. It is a child-directed approach, so it is important to follow their lead throughout play. 

Example of parallel-talk: “Oh you have a block! It’s a purple block. Wow! You built a tower.” 

 Both of these strategies are easy to incorporate throughout daily routines or when you are down on the floor playing with your child. You may already be using these strategies without realizing it! It is important for your child to be exposed to many words. The more they hear, the more they will start to use!

Implement both forms of talk throughout your daily routines, to help promote and reinforce language skills with your child on a daily basis. Be animated, and have fun!!  

Jacqueline Pfeiffer, CCC-SLP

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