Baby Talk: Resources to support the people who work with infants and toddlers

Issue No. 11, April 2012

How Are Infants and Toddlers Faring in Your State?

A cool resource from Zero to Three can quickly provide information about the status of infants, toddlers, and families in your state. Click on the interactive map at the website to access key data points as well as the evidence sources for those points.

Attachment: What Works?

Donna Wittmer authored this concise and practical resource for The Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Childhood which highlights what attachment is, why it’s important, and how caregivers and family members can support it.

Infant Toddler Temperament Tool

The Infant Toddler Temperament Tool (IT3), developed for the Center for Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation, is available to download in English and Spanish. IT3 includes a short online survey that allows parents and caregivers of infants and toddlers to better understand their own temperament, the temperament of the children they care for, and how adult/child similarities or differences in temperament may affect “goodness of fit.” The IT3 also provides tips to help adults foster the unique temperament of each child within their care.

Naps May Be More Important Than You think

Toddlers between two and a half and three years old who miss only a single daily nap show more anxiety, less joy and interest, and a poorer understanding of how to solve problems, says Monique LeBourgeois, assistant professor of psychology at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Her results indicate that insufficient sleep alters the facial expressions of toddlers—exciting events are responded to less positively and frustrating events are responded to more negatively.

Finger Feeding vs Spoon Feeding

Allowing babies who are being weaned to feed themselves with finger foods rather than spoon-feeding the baby with pureed foods may reduce their risk for obesity later on, according to new research. The study, which included 155 children aged 20 months to 6.5 years, found that those who were allowed to feed themselves were more likely to eat a healthier diet and maintain a normal weight as they got older.

Baby Talk is a free, one-way listserv that is distributed monthly. Each issue features one or more resources, the majority of which are available to download at no cost. To join the listserv, send an email with no message to For additional information (or to offer suggestions), please contact Camille Catlett at or (919) 966-6635.