Child Speech Milestones

Speech Development

The under 12 month baby ...

There they lay, the apple-of-your-eye all snuggly and buggly in their teeny tiny teddy bear onesie. Your little precious bundle of love should be making sounds such as grunts and gurgles, and coos and goos at around 3 months.

 

Once your little one is around 4 to 7 months you should start hearing the emergence of 'k' and 'g' sounds as they lay on their back and kick and yell at that hangy thingy toy. They may also start producing non-sensical, babbling combinations like 'baga', 'kaka' and the all-so-classic 'gaga'. Don't worry too much if the k and g sound disappear, they should come back relatively soon.

 

The 12 month old ...

Your baby's first birthday is here. Babble sounds begin to become more complex and longer in length. You can expect to hear sounds like “bababa” or “gabagaba” or 'kukabaga'. Your little one may start copying the different sounds that they hear in their environment and they may even say their first words...be careful what you saaaay!! 

 

The 18 month old ...

Now you might start hearing a larger repertoire of sounds such as m, p, b, d, w, and h ringing from that crib at what should be nap time. Your baby will probably start putting non-sensical sounds and words together to form the makings of their first sentences and/or sentence like productions. Sound combinations containing vowels and consonants such as 'ma-ba-doopa' will fill the early morning air. As you lay in bed with one eye on the monitor and one eye closed, you might start to recognize approximations and even real words. By now you as the parent will understand them around 25% of the time. 

 

By now your child should:

  • say the M P B D W and H sounds independently

  • parents should understand 25% of the time. 

The 2 year old ...

Time to add some new sounds mom and dad. Your precious tiny peanut that appeared 2 short years ago is long gone and with that ever emerging personality, new sounds are being added to their arsenal seemingly everyday. They already have the m, p, b, w, and h sound and emergence of the t, d and n sound start to appear. Most vowel sounds are said correctly like eh, ee, eye, oh, you. Understanding your new sound warrior has now increased to 50 to 75% of the time. 

 

The 2½ year old ...

Only 6 months have passed since those two candles were blown out and your monster hasn't made huge strides in adding too many new sounds but they're beginning to say the same sounds in the initial (beginning) and the final (end) position of words. Because this whole talking thing is still relatively new, they may still produce words in an in an incomplete form such as “bubu” for bubbles or “ba” for ball. 

By now your child should:

  • say the M P B T D W Nand H sounds independently

  • parents should understand 50-75% of the time. 

The 3 year old ...

Not only is that little attitude totally developed but they can now tell you about it! Sounds such as m, p, b, w, t, d, n, h, k, g, f, s, vowels, 'y' as in yes, and 'ing' as in sing are all being combined to create sounds, words and language. You now understand between 75 to 100% of what your child is saying. Remember when they were 3 months???

 

The 4 year old ...

Junior Kindergarten registration has come and gone and your 'big boy or girl' not only knows what they want to say but they can articulate it. That sound library continues to expand including sounds like m, p, b, w, t, d, n, h, k, g, f, y, l, s, z, vowels, and ing. Trust me....by now...everything is 100% understood.

 

By now your child should:

  • say the M P B T D W N K G F Y L S Z and H sounds independently

  • parents should understand 100% of the time. 

The 5 year old ...

Now we're moving into the fast paced life of school, dance, hockey and gymnastics. There's no looking back...full speed ahead. Your 5-year-old will be able to say most sounds correctly by now except for maybe r, v, ch, and th. Blends are being tossed in the mix such as l blends like the word black. Some kids may still say s, z, sh, ch, or j with the tongue sticking out (a lisp). Don't worry, we can work on that. Now your child's speech can be easily understood by everyone including immediate family, extended family, friends and strangers. Weren't we taught not to talk to strangers?

 

By now your child should:

  • say most sounds except for maybe R V CH and TH

  • understood by siblings, friends, parents and unfamiliar listeners

The 6 year old ...

Well folks we're nearing the end. Most sounds are now said correctly except for maybe r and th. Get rid of that list of people that understand your speaking sponge because everyone....and I mean everyone understands them.

By now your child should:

  • all sounds except for maybe TH and R

 

The 7 year old ...

Boring I know! All sounds except for that elusive th should be said correctly. Strange how everyone understands them but for some reason when you ask them to clean up their toys they just can't figure it out.

By now your child should:

  • all sounds except for maybe TH and R

 

The 8 year old ...

Yikes! What can I say, the trials and tribulations of speech development have reared their ugly little head....You came..you saw...you conquered. Your little 'gaga-googoo' is no longer and a strong willed, articulate young man or woman stands before you. Speech sound development...dominated! Just in time for puberty to start! Good luck mom and good luck dad. 

By now your child should:

  • say all sounds correctly 

  • easily understood by everyone

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