Why are kids so enthralled by Elmo?

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What is it with kids and their love of Elmo? His jabber mimics “mother-ese”—it is high pitched with dragged out vowels and exaggerated inflections—which helps kids identify Elmo as someone they should listen to. “The style of it is very much, ‘this is for you,’” says Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, director of the Infant Language Laboratory at Temple.