The Function of Parental Proxy Talk in Pre-Verbal Communication

  • Okamoto Yoriko
    Department of Early Childhood Education and Care, Shohoku College
  • Sugano Yukie
    Department of Childhood Studies, Aoyama Gakuin Women's Junior College
  • Shoji Reika
    Graduate School of Education Master's Course, University of Yamanashi
  • Takahashi Chie
    Faculty of Regional Sciences, Tottori University
  • Yagishita-Kawata Akiko
    Japan Organization for Employment of the Elderly Persons with Disabilities and Job Seekers Hokkaido Center
  • Aoki Yayoi
    Department of Early Childhood Education and Care, Matsuyama Shinonome Junior College
  • Ishikawa Ayuchi
    Aichi Prefecture Child Guidance Center
  • Kamei Miyako
    Research and Education Center for Life Span Development, Shirayuri College
  • Kawata Manabu
    Graduate School of Education, Hokkaido University
  • Suda Osamu
    Graduate School of Humanities, Tokyo Metropolitan University

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Other Title
  • 親はどのように乳児とコミュニケートするか:前言語期の親子コミュニケーションにおける代弁の機能
  • オヤ ワ ドノ ヨウ ニ ニュウジ ト コミュニケート スル カ : ゼン ゲンゴキ ノ オヤコ コミュニケーション ニ オケル ダイベン ノ キノウ

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How do parents communicate with babies before their infants learn to talk? It has been observed that parents use Parental Proxy Talk (PPT) as if the speech came from the infant's own voice. In other words, PPT reflects their expectations what the infants were thinking and feeling. The present study of PPT explored how PPT functions from birth to 15 months of age, and how PPT contributes to communication with pre-verbal infants. Dyadic interactions of twelve mothers with their infants were observed and analyzed. The results showed that there were three periods in the development of the use of PPT; (1) a gradual increase between 0–3 months, (2) a peak period from 6–9 months, and (3) a period of decreasing use of PPT from 12–15 months. The study also showed that PPT functions to support not only the pre-verbal infants but also parents themselves, e.g., in parents' emotion regulation.


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