Language Development Milestones

Language Development Milestones

Kids develop differently.” The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) says you should avoid comparing your child’s abilities with those of his peers; some children are just naturally more talkative than others. Don’t be discouraged if your child doesn’t acquire the skills right away. Use these milestones as a guide. “Give or take a few months is not all that bad.

At Age One

  • Like going through books and looking at pictures
  • Likes being read to
  • Knows how to follow simple directions
  • Points to objects, pictures, body parts, and family members when asked
  • Says two or three words (even if not clearly said)
  • Tries to copy words heard and makes different sounds from words
  • May start to combine words
  • May start to use pronoun “mine”

At Ages Two To Three

  • Knows more words
  • Answers simple questions
  • Speaks in two to three word phrases
  • Learns how to use plurals, like “shoes”
  • Uses questions to ask for something
  • Knows descriptive words

At Ages Three To Four

  • Identifies colors and shapes
  • Speaks more clearly
  • Able to describe everyday objects
  • Has fun with language, especially books with rhymes, etc.
  • Able to verbally express own feelings more and more
  • Repeats sentences

At Ages Four To Five

  • Understands spatial concepts, like “here” or “there”
  • Understands more complex questions
  • Speech is understandable, but still has a difficult time pronouncing longer words
  • Says about 200 to 300 words
  • Describes how to do things and how things are done, and what he is doing
  • Defines words
  • Answers “why” questions

At Age Five

  • Understands more than 2000 words
  • Understands time sequence and story sequence
  • Carries out a series of three directions
  • Uses more complex / longer sentences
  • Uses imagination to create own stories


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