early language

4 Ways to Help Your Toddler Say Mama

May 17, 2023

I’m Brooke
I'm a speech therapist with a mission to make speech therapy simple and accessible! 
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If you’re like me, you couldn’t wait to hear your little one say “mama” for the first time. If it hasn’t happened yet, here are a few expert tips from a speech therapist

Read “Everything is Mama”

This book by Jimmy Fallon is one of my favorites! It’s full of familiar vocabulary such as “waffle” and “sun,”  and the repetition of “mama” is great because your little one gets to hear “mama” over and over. Once your toddler is familiar with the book, try pausing and looking at them expectantly.

Sing the “Mama Song”

Sing this sweet song from Ms, Rachel and see if the rhythm helps your little one say your name!

Practice the “mmm” sound

Little ones use new words that start with sounds they are already using.  That’s because sounds are building blocks! Encouraging your little one to say the “mmm” sound can be a helpful first step in working towards “mama.” Model lots of the “mmm” sound while eating and playing. 

Look at photos of mama together:

Stop and point out “mama” in all your photos. I actually have a photo book from our wedding in Aubrey’s room and we talk about all the familiar people, including “mama.” Say your name in a slower, sing songy way, called child-directed speech, to really make it stand out!

If you’re looking for more ways to help your toddler say new words, check out my course for parents of late-talkers here

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