SPEECH AND LANGUAGE MILESTONES

BY AGE ONE YEAR

  • Recognizes name
  • Says 2-3 words besides “mama” and “dada” 
  • Makes consonant sounds p, b, m, d, t, w
  • Engages in vocal play
  • Enjoys reciprocal games like peak-a-boo
  • Attempts to get others attention via squeals and cries
  • Demonstrates eye contact and joint engagement with others
  • Imitates familiar words
  • Understands simple instructions
  • Recognizes words as symbols for objects (ie. car – points to garage, cat – meows)

BETWEEN AGES ONE AND TWO YEARS

  • Understands “no”
  • Demonstrates a growing vocabulary with at least 50 words by the age of two years 
  • Imitates words and sounds spoken by others
  • May say “no” when means “yes”
  • Talks to other children as well as adults
  • Solves problems by talking instead of hitting or crying
  • Answers “where” questions
  • Names common pictures and things
  • Uses short sentences like “me want more” or “me want cookie”
  • Matches 3-4 colors, knows big versus little

BETWEEN AGES THREE AND FOUR YEARS

  • Can tell a story
  • Has a sentence length of 4-5 words
  • Speech is understood most of the time by people outside of the immediate family
  • Beginning to use grammatical markers to indicate tense (past, present, future)
  • Use of pronouns my, yours, his/hers, he/she, etc.
  • Has a vocabulary of nearly 1000 words
  • Name basic colors
  • Understands “yesterday”, “summer”, “lunchtime”, “tonight”, “little-big”
  • Begins to obey requests like “put the block under the chair”
  • Knows his/her last name, name of the street she/he lives on, and several nursery rhymes

BETWEEN AGES FOUR AND FIVE YEARS

  • Has a sentence length of at least 4-5 words consistently
  • Uses past tense correctly
  • Has a vocabulary of nearly 1500 words
  • Points to colors red, blue, yellow, and green
  • Identifies triangles, circles, and squares
  • Can speak of imaginary conditions, such as “I hope”
  • Asks many grammatically correct questions, asks, “who?” and “why?”
  • Uses a variety of grammatical forms to indicate tense, plurality, possession

BETWEEN AGES FIVE AND SIX YEARS

  • Has a sentence length of at least 5-6 words consistently
  • Speech is understood by all listeners, all of the time, despite some developmental articulation errors on L, R, and TH
  • Has a vocabulary of around 2000 words 
  • Defines objects by their use (e.g. you can eat with a fork) and can tell what objects are made of
  • Knows spatial relations like “on top”, “behind”, “far”, and “near”
  • Knows his/her address
  • Identifies a penny, nickel, and dime
  • Knows common opposites, like “big/little”
  • Understands “same” and “different”
  • Counts ten objects
  • Asks questions for information
  • Distinguishes left and right hand
  • Uses all types of sentences (e.g. “Let’s go to the store after we eat”)
  • Uses a variety of grammatical forms to indicate tense, plurality, and possession