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Is Your Child a Late Talker?

Is your child a late talker? A general description of a late talker is a child 18-30 months of age who seems to understand the language spoken, however, does not speak or say words compared to other children of similar ages. Late talkers seem to develop normally in other areas including motor skills, thinking skills and play skills.

Speech and Language Milestone Chart

1 Year

  • Recognizes name
  • Says 2-3 words besides ‘mama’ and “dada”
  • Understands simple instructions
  • Imitates familiar words

1-2 Years

  • Uses 10-20 words.
  • Combines two words such as “mommy bye-bye”
  • Uses words such as “more” to make wants known
  • Points to simple pictures

2-3 Years

  • Approximately 450 word vocabulary
  • Carries on conversations with self and toys
  • Uses shorts sentences
  • Matches 3-4 colors, knows big and little

3-4 Years

  • Vocabulary of 1000 words
  • Has sentence lengths of 4-5 words
  • Begins to obey requests like “time to go to bed”
  • Names at least one color

4-5 Years

  • Vocabulary of 1500 words
  • Identifies triangles, circles and squares
  • Asks many questions like “who?” and “why?”
  • Uses past tense correctly

5-6 Years

  • Vocabulary of 2000 words
  • Asks questions for information
  • Has sentence lengths of 5-6 words
  • Defines objects for their use “You drink out of a cup”
Little boy during lesson with his speech therapist. Learning through fun and play

If My Child Is a Late Talker, What Can I Do?

It is very possible you have received lots of advice from friends, teachers, professionals and parents on what they think you should do. Keep in mind, children that are late talkers develop at different rates. Some learn to speak normally on their own and do not need any therapy at all. Unfortunately, because children develop differently, there is no definite way to tell if your child is a late talker. If your child is a late talker, the sooner the problem is detected and treatment is started, the better chance your child has a chance to catch up.

If you think your child might have a speech or language development concern, please contact us so we can do an assessment. Nicole at Strategies for Success is a certified speech language pathologist. If an evaluation is done and we find your child shows signs of being a late talker, we can strategize to develop an individualized therapy plan for your child.

Specialized Speech and Language Therapy