Silly Sounds

Imitating sounds is a really fun step in your child’s speech development, so switch your real-word brain off and turn your fun-word brain on! This video discussed the need for playing with your child using “silly” sounds only. By silly sounds I mean sounds that have a meaning but aren’t actually dictionary words. At this stage your child is probably not ready for real words yet, so this is a great skill to teach them!

Examples of non-speech sounds or “silly sounds” are: 

  • “Shh” meaning “quiet”
  • “Mmm” meaning yummy”
  • “Bleh” meaning “yucky”
  • “Pew” meaning “stinky”
  • “Grr” meaning “I’m angry”
  • “Uhg” meaning “I’m frustrated”
  • “Tisk-tisk-tisk” meaning “Don’t do that”
  • “Sigh” for feeling tired
  • “Gasp” sound, for surprise

Other silly sounds:

  • Raspberry sounds
  • Cough 
  • Sneeze
  • Clearing your throat
  • Tongue click
  • Yawn
  • Blowing on something that’s “hot” (for it’s hot)
  • Slurping sounds
  • “Ahh” sound after drinking
  • “Num, Num” eating or smacking sounds
  • Burping sounds

In your workbook you’ll find a list of silly sounds, split up based on the activities, which include kitchen, toy animals, cars, and baby dolls. Use this as a reference during play. You can mark off the sounds your child learns to imitate. These are just suggested sounds that are based on how I play with children. You and your child can make up your own sounds!

Before you move on…

Open your workbook and write down some fun sound play ideas, using toys or activities that you already use with your child.


Teach me to Talk, 2016. 11 Skills Toddlers MUST Use Before Words. Episodes 275-290. [podcast] Teach me to Talk. Available at: https://teachmetotalk.com/tag/laura-mize-podcast/.