TALK TIP: Use Toy Talk

Posted: October 13, 2020

“Toy Talk” is a strategy you can use while playing with your child, in addition to using “self talk” and parallel talk”, both of which have been reviewed in previous posts.  “Toy Talk” is a simple adaptation of these strategies. Toy talk shifts the conversation toward descriptive comments about the toys and objects themselves, matching the content of your sentences to your child’s interests and activities.  Toy Talk was designed to promote nouns as sentence subjects.

  1. In “Toy Talk”, there are two main components:a) Talking about the toys your child is playing with, including the actions, states, properties of the toys (e.g., The baby is drinking.  The ball rolled away.)
  2. Naming the object (e.g., That’s a cow.)

More examples of toy talk during play:

  • Playing with dolls – The baby is sleepy. The baby is thirsty. The baby’s eyes are closed.  The baby is wearing a hat
  • Playing with farm animals – The barn door is open.  The pig is dirty.  The duck is swimming.  The cow is eating.  The horse goes in the barn.
  • Playing with bubbles – The bubbles are going up.  The bubble popped.  The bubble is on the wand.  The bubble is big.
  • Playing with blocks – The blocks are in the bucket.  The tower is big.  The tower fell down.  The blue block is on top.
  • Playing with vehicles – The car is fast.  The truck crashed.  The car goes beep beep.  The car is in the garage.  The airplane is flying in the sky.

 Using “Toy Talk” along with “Self Talk” and “Parallel Talk” provides great language input to help your child grow their vocabulary, increase their sentence length and learn about different concepts.