Recognising colours?

(15 Posts)
hippiedays Mon 13-Jun-16 02:26:55

My child is two and a half and I am starting to worry that she is not recognising different colours.

I wasn't initially worried but at a baby class recently, the teacher got all the toddlers to hold a parachutue type thing for one of the games. She sang a little song about different colours and went around the circle asking the childrern to shout out what colour they were holding (the parachute had blocks of differerent coloured material). ALL the other children knew their colours except for my child who is one of the older children in the group.

For the past number of months, whenever we look at something, I say the colour and ask her to say it after me and she repeatedly says 'white' for every colour. I don't make a big deal about it and recently she has started to recognise blue and pink and orange but for every other colour she says white. DH thinks she may be colour blind.

I'm unsure if we are comparing her unfavourably to her older sibling who had an extensive vocabulary at her age. Her sibling memorises things and rarely asks to repeat something so the difference with our younger child may be more noticeable.

I googled before posting and read that children should be able to say one colour by the time they are thirty six months old but that seems very old to me especially given that most of the two year olds in the baby class seem to know all their colours.

Reading over this, I sound like a pushy mum when in reality I'm not at all. Her speech appears to be delayed but again, maybe I'm comparing her to her sibling. I feel too that I had a lot of one to one time with my older child and I definitely don't get to spend that time with my younger child. She says 'wa wa' for water and quite short sentences - usually three words - and can be difficult to understand. Maybe this has been highlighted as we had guests staying this weekend who really didn't' understand anything she was saying. I am generally able to understand her or at least have a stab at guessing what she wants. Another thing is she doesn't speak very much, it is usually just when she wants something. She doesn't just try to 'chat' like my older child did at her age. Maybe the reason for this is because she can't say the words. She seems to understand everything we say and will follow instructions (if she feels like it). She chats to her older sibling but not too her Dad or me. She also falls regularly and doesn't seem co-ordinated but this is improving. I asked the HV about the falling but she didn't seem unduly concerned. Maybe I should ask about the talking too? She is quite strong willed and independent little girl and has a great sense of fun.

Should I be concerned? Is there something I can do to help?

2nds Mon 13-Jun-16 02:30:24

Would she need grommets?

PerspicaciaTick Mon 13-Jun-16 02:34:22

I was wondering about ears too - maybe a trip to the GP. You could also ask your HV for a referral to a speech and language service, some areas have informal groups where you can get support and advice.

exexpat Mon 13-Jun-16 02:35:00

Does she recognise the different colours, even if she doesn't say the names? Eg, if there is a pile of duplo and you ask her to give you a red piece or a yellow piece, does she get the right one, or is she confused?

DS was relatively slow to speak and hard to understand at that age, but he could definitely distinguish between the colours, even if he couldn't always say the colour names correctly.

I can't give any advice, but just thought it might be helpful to work out if it is just part of a possible language delay, or if she doesn't understand the concept of different colours.

hippiedays Mon 13-Jun-16 02:46:36

Her hearing was checked and was fine. Should I have it rechecked?

I don't think she would pass me a piece of lego/duplo if I asked for a specific colour but I'm now wondering when I last asked her to do this. I tend to pick up something and say 'pink spoon', 'yellow cardigan' type of thing rather than let her pass something to me. I will try it tomorrow.

For some reason, I have always worried a little about her and have a niggling fear that she has some sort of learning difficulty. I have tried talking to DH/my sister about this but they keep saying that every child is different and I need to stop comparing her to my older child (who was born old!).

I will try asking her to pass me different colours tomorrow but know already that she will play that game' for about ten seconds before getting bored and doing her own thing.

2nds Mon 13-Jun-16 03:21:07

My DC was going for hearing tests every 6 weeks from around 2 years old and was only diagnosed with glue ear at 3 years old and had the OP about 2 months later. So just going by our own experience yes I'd say have her ears looked at again.

AppleMagic Mon 13-Jun-16 03:37:02

Ds is 2.5 and only really knows blue. I do t think it's a speech thing because he can say the other colours in conversation, just can't pick them out when asked. I think it's an abstract concept and it grasps the attention of some kids more than others. Ds is more into shapes.

Bubbinsmakesthree Mon 13-Jun-16 08:48:27

Colours are cognitively quite a tricky one and some 'get it' much faster than others.

Does she ever sort things by colour? Like separating out duplo into piles? That would suggest visually she could recognise the differences even if she can't put names to them yet. You could try this as a game.

If you're generally a bit concerned about speech it is worth following up again with HV etc but not knowing colours at 2.5 wouldn't in itself worry me.

hippiedays Mon 13-Jun-16 10:19:31

I just asked her to sort out little domino cards that have two main colours. I pointed to one colour and asked her if she could give me a card that had the same colour. She had no problem doing it for about five cards and she got up and walked away so it seems she recognises colours lyet when I pointed to a red card and asked what colour it was, she saiid white!

purpleme12 Mon 13-Jun-16 13:01:16

My little girl is 2.8 and doesn't know her colours. She goes to nursery so I know there's nothing wrong (I don't think there is anyway). She can repeat colours if u say then but she doesn't know which is which she'll often just say it's blue

Bubbinsmakesthree Mon 13-Jun-16 13:46:51

I think it is very normal to have a 'default' word like your DD saying 'white'. My DS is just starting to understand colour and he will repeat me if I use a colour word ('red bus' etc) but if I ask him what colour something is he will generally tell me it is green! grin

He did exactly the same when learning about other words. All forms of transport were 'car' at first (including trains etc) but he now knows bus, truck, train, tram, tractor and so on. If he's not certain about an animal he usually calls it 'cat'.

Ferguson Tue 14-Jun-16 18:56:28

It might be worth trying to get her vision tested, including for colour blindness.

gubbinsy Tue 14-Jun-16 19:19:56

My 2.5 DS says green or colour if you ask him! There is an excellent chance he might be colour blind as my brother and maternal grandfather are/were but we're just trying to name them for him more - he'll either get it or he won't. He is getting grommets soon as an aside!

hippiedays Tue 14-Jun-16 19:25:15

Her vision was tested and is fine. Only tested due to family being glasses wearers.

She isxable to say some colours - blue/pink/black/orange. The others she muddles up most of the time.

Perhaps I am expecting too much of her due to comparing her to her older sibling. Her language is poor in comparison but in general she is far more 'babyish' at this age than her sibling was. I feel a bit silly writing that as at 2.5 she IS a baby!

BayLeaves Wed 15-Jun-16 21:08:55

I have also wondered if my 2 year old is colourblind at times. He'll often say everything is red. Sometimes he gets red, yellow and pink right but never blue or green. Meanwhile he is otherwise really good with his speech, today he even came out with "Mummy make a cappuccino!" when I was using my coffee machine. So the fact he struggles with colours despite being a good talker made me worried.

However, I did read online that because colours are such an abstract concept, children up to the age of 6 can struggle with them even if they're otherwise perfectly intelligent.

I think that might be true because the other day I asked him "How many chickens are there?" and he said "pink!"... So I think properties like colour, quantity etc. are just a bit abstract for most two 2 year olds to grasp!

You could try and observe whether she identifies things based on colour. Cars are ideal for this. e.g. DS calls red vans 'nee naws', and red cars 'nanny car' (my mum has a red car), blue cars he says the name of one of his little friends whose mum drives a blue car, yellow cars he calls 'taxi' because he has a yellow toy taxi, etc.

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