Jacqueline Grosse, M.A., CCC/SLP, LLC  - Speech & Language Pathologist

Language Development Chart
Age of Child & Typical Language Development
6 Months
Vocalization with intonation
Responds to his name
Responds to human voices without visual cues by turning his head and eyes
Responds appropriately to friendly and angry tones
12 Months
Uses one or more words with meaning (this may be a fragment of a word)
Understands simple instructions, especially if vocal or physical cues are given
Practices inflection
Is aware of the social value of speech
18 Months
Has vocabulary of approximately 5-20 words
Vocabulary made up chiefly of nouns
Some echolalia (repeating a word or phrase over and over)
Much jargon with emotional content
Is able to follow simple commands
24 Months
Can name a number of objects common to his surroundings
Is able to use at least two prepositions, usually chosen from the following: in, on, under
Combines words into a short sentence-largely noun-verb combinations (mean) length of sentences is given as 1.2 words
Approximately 2/3 of what child says should be intelligible
Vocabulary of approximately 150-300 words
Rhythm and fluency often poor
Volume and pitch of voice not yet well-controlled
Can use two pronouns correctly: I, me, you, although me and I are often confused, My and mine are beginning to emerge
Responds to such commands as “show me your eyes (nose, mouth, hair)”
36 Months
Use pronouns I, you, me correctly
Is using some plurals and past tenses
Knows at least three prepositions, usually in, on, under
Knows chief parts of body and should be able to indicate these if not name
Handles three word sentences easily
Has in the neighborhood of 900-1000 words
About 90% of what child says should be intelligible
Verbs begin to predominate
Understands most simple questions dealing with his environment and activities
Relates his experiences so that they can be followed with reason
Able to reason out such questions as “what must you do when you are sleepy, hungry, cool, or thirsty?”
Should be able to give his sex, name, age
Should not be expected to answer all questions even though he understands what is expected
48 Months
Knows names of familiar animals
Can use at least four prepositions or can demonstrate his understanding of their meaning when given commands
Names common objects in picture books or magazines
Knows one or more colors
Can repeat 4 digits when they are given slowly
Can usually repeat words of four syllables
Demonstrates understanding of over and under
Has most vowels and diphthongs and the consonants p, b, m, w, n well established
Often indulges in make-believe
Extensive verbalization as he carries out activities
Understands such concepts as longer, larger, when a contrast is presented
Readily follows simple commands even thought the stimulus objects are not in sight
Much repetition of words, phrases, syllables, and even sounds
60 Months
Can use many descriptive words spontaneously-both adjectives and adverbs
Knows common opposites: big-little, hard-soft, heave-light, etc
Has number concepts of 4 or more
Can count to ten
Speech should be completely intelligible, in spite of articulation problems
Should have all vowels and the consonants, m,p,b,h,w,k,g,t,d,n,ng,y (yellow)
Should be able to repeat sentences as long as nine words
Should be able to define common objects in terms of use (hat, shoe, chair)
Should be able to follow three commands given without interruptions
Should know his age
Should have simple time concepts: morning, afternoon, night, day, later, after, while, tomorrow, yesterday, today
Should be using fairly long sentences and should use some compound and some complex sentences
Speech on the whole should be grammatically correct

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