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Am I slowing my child's speech?(24 Posts)
My child is 18 months. They understand 90% of commands and respond well. When asked a question they understand enough to say yes or no. They are also very good at communicating what they want by pointing and explaining through gestures.
The issue is their vocabulary is quite limited. Their name, mummy, daddy, hi, bye, thank you, yes, no, one, two, three, cuddly toy name, baby, oh no, boo, cheers & banana.
I honestly do not know how to increase their vocabulary. My mother has suggested that next time they point to something to pretend not to understand and tell them "you need to tell me what you want".
Can anyone help or have any suggestions?
I’ve read to try and expand one word at a time. So if the child says “ball” you say “yes, a red ball” so you’re adding in a extra word and building sentences. 18 months is still so little
The best thing to do is to talk.
Talk, talk, talk. If they point at something, say 'oh, you want the car? The red car? Here's the car'
Describe what you're doing in boring, excessive performance parenting style detail.
And tell your DM to fuck off. Not in earshot of your child though, I guarantee they'll repeat it crystal clear
Do not do what your mother suggests. If you do that you may well end up frustrating your child.
Keep talking to your child. Every time you put on their clothes for example, say 'we are putting on your red jumper'. Or 'your yellow skirt'. 'Here are your shoes'. Talk, talk, talk...
My son had about 10 words up to the age of 2/12. Then he found his vocabulary! My public health nurse always told me that once his passive vocabulary was growing (ie. words that he could understand), that his active vocabulary would follow (ie words he could say).
Gosh no, your mother's idea is not a good one.
Your DC is so young, it would be rather mean to pretend not understand him or her. Just keep talking to him or her. S/he will get there. Children just need to be talked to. If you pretend not to understand is would be so frustrating and upsetting, very bad idea.
I am a speech pathologist. talk talk talk throughout the day BUT keep it to your child's level and not sentences. eg bath time/plug in/tap on/pants off/top off etc. add one word to their spontaneous words eg baby says cheese you model"more cheese" dont ask lots of q. especially" wjats that".
Your child speaks perfectly well for an 18mo. They will increase their vocabulary as they grow and develop. There isn't a problem - you don't have to teach them to talk - just talk to them, as I'm sure you do, and they will naturally develop.
Sounds entirely normal to me. I found reading loads of books with my son has really helped his vocabulary. Getting him to point stuff out initially and then moving on to asking him what things are.
At 18months that's all my DS could say. In fact at his 2 year check he only had about 15 words and we had a speech and language referral. 8 weeks later we saw the HV again with her colleague and It was like DS had swallowed a dictionary in that time!
Definitely don't force a child to use words they haven't yet said. I tell my 3 year old to use her words when she is having a paddy and just squeaking about stuff, but only because I know she has the ability to say them.
As PPs have said, just keep talking to him and he'll get there
At 18 months DS had around 25 words. (I seem to remember that is perfectly fine for that age.) A year later he has hundreds and speaks in full sentences. Just keep talking and when your DC's spoken language acquisition gets going it will be extremely rapid.
My DD had excellent understanding but barely said a word until she turned 2, then she had a massive vocabulary explosion- it was really surprising.
Sounds like my DD at the same age. At around 22 months she became like a verbal tap with the vocabulary flowing. She's now 26 months and very coherent, uses complex sentences etc. You'll be amazed how quickly they pick it up!
I'm sure you're not slowing DC's speech - DD had a lot of words at 18 months, her younger brother was much less articulate at the same age but we talked to both the same, it's just how they were.
Be patient, 18m is still very young. DS didn’t say so much at that age but he could speak perfectly in three languages just a year after that.
There are some words they know but won't use until they need them
Our daughter is 3 and just really starting to use more words (slight delayed speech but perfect recall and understanding).
18 months is still young and a good range, our issue was interaction with other kids and now she's at nursery her vocab is coming on massively.
Speech therapy is an option later on but no assessment will be done until after 2yrs old - maybe early placement might be an option but again would be after 2yrs old.
Talk and walk and toddler groups are your friend.
Hi I’m an early years practitioner we encourage language development in the following ways;
Lots of books, looking at pictures and pointing things out.
Building on words the child already has if they say “ball” you can add a word “big/small/red ball” etc once they’re using two words confidently you can add a third.
Reduce questions, instead give your child time to finish your sentence “it’s a...? “Ready steady...? (wait 10 seconds) you then give them the correct word if they don’t say it but do give the 10 seconds as that’s how long it can take for a toddler to process.
Lastly lots of praise, patience and going at the child’s pace, your baby is only 18 months and from the list of words you’ve given above is absolutely on track for language development for this age and stage.
Please also ignore your DM’s suggestion as that sort of pressure can have the opposite affect.
Sounds like you and your little one are doing great!
Christ even my 3 year old won't answer questions with the word yes! Just repeats what it is I've asked her if she wants. For example "Would you like a drink" if she doesn't she says "NO!" and if she does, she say's "Drink"
Yet she lows the alphabet and can say multiple sentences and even quote entire episodes of Bing & Thomas.....
They're all different. You're expecting FAR FAR too much from an 18 month old
At 18 months, DD hadn't managed mama (or any variation on it) though she had a few other words (including dada). By the time she was 3, you couldn't shut her up, and people were commenting on how good her vocab was. You really don't need to worry.
They reach a stage where they will try and say new words... that is really badly put. This weekend I was looking at a book with my 2.3 year old and there was a hippopotamus. I said hippopotamus and my daughter paused and cake out with it herself. Not sure we’ve ever talked about hippos before, she may never have heard the word before but she suddenly decided it was worth a try to say it.
But there is no point pushing it. It’ll just frustrate you and your little one. K
Mine didn't speak a single word until 22 months.
Even at 2 only has about 20 single words
Thank you so much. This is very reassuring. I talk a lot to him but I think I tend to do full sentences. I will focus more on words.
20 words at 18 months is expected development so your little one is spot on.
Try singing lots of songs. Song are easier to learn than words apparently.
I use old of reparative phrases and DD picked up them up quickly eg “cat’s name where are you?” and “Here is it”. The stock things you say all day long when you are with a toddler. It was not an active decision but it seems to have helped her.
There are some lovely ideas here - songs, repetition, talking about what you're doing. At 18m, a vocab of 20 words is fine. I wouldn't even worry too much about expanding by an extra word yet - maybe start doing that when their vocab is closer to 50 words.
Don't forget to use lots of verbs (action words like jumping, playing, smiling, cuddling) - when parents worry about vocab building, it's easy to get focused on labelling items, and forgetting that you need action words to build sentences.
I'm a speech and language therapist too <waves at whinetime>
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