One of the most common questions we hear is, “Is my child developing normally?” (or something to that effect). It’s important to remember that between the ages of 12-24 months there is some room to move in terms of what is considered “normal”. For example, some children by the age of 12 months will have multiple first words, while others may not start using words until a couple of months later. While there is a relatively large span of what is considered “normal”, children generally develop within certain timeframes, and there are things you should be on the lookout for.
At around two years of age (and onwards), children tend to have an “explosion” of language. This can be an exciting time.
Below is a table that outlines some of the language and play skills a child should be developing by and from the age of 2 years. Below the table are some ‘red flags’ to be wary of.
|Receptive Language (Understanding)||Expressive Language(Talking)|
|Play & Pragmatics|
If you are worried about your baby’s communication (even if you’re just unsure), it is advisable to contact a speech pathologist. Some things to watch out for are in your 2 year old are:
- Your child is not using any two-word phrases independently (i.e. without imitating you)
- Your child is showing signs of frustration that they are not understood
- Has difficulty following basic two step instructions
- Speech is always difficult to understand – Speech is less than 50% intelligible (or understandable) by two years or 75% by 3 years.
- Has difficulty identifying/pointing to common objects/pictures when named (i.e. Where’s the cat?)
- Your child has an ‘unusual’ (or ‘husky’ ‘hoarse’) voice
Contact us for results focused speech therapy
This article was written by our speech pathologist Jenna Butterworth who is a Speech Pathology Australia member.
American Speech-Language Hearing Association Website (2011). How does your child hear and talk? Birth to one year. Accessed from American Speech-Language-Hearing Association on 27/08/2013
Lanza, J.R. & Flahive, L.K. (2008). LinguiSystems guide to communication milestones: 2009 Edition. East Moline, IL: LinguiSystems, Inc. Retrieved from LinguiSystems Guide to Communication Milestones (9-1-2012)
Paul, R. (2006). Language Disorders: From Infancy through Adolescence (3rd Ed). St Louis: Mosby Inc.
Speech Pathology Australia (2013). Helping your baby talk. Accessed from Helping your baby to talk – Speech Pathology Australia on 27/08/13.