Dr. Sears Blog: Toddler Talk

Your child's speech and language development is one of the cutest parts of growing up. When they are young, they come up with so many funny, endearing "versions" of words. I love to watch old videos of one of my kids using the word "dreen" to describe the color green!

While this toddler talk is adorable, you also want to be sure to do everything you can to be sure his or her development is normal and he or she eventually learns to speak correctly! Here are a few tips: 

  • Beginning in infancy, introduce new vocabulary in a meaningful context. For example, name specific foods at dinner time: "Here is a banana." 
  • Read books and sing songs to your child on a daily basis. 
  • Narrate what you are doing, speaking directly to your child. Ask him or her questions, and give him or her time to respond. For this you'll need to be patient. 
  • Resist the temptation to use baby language. Your child needs to hear the correct pronunciation of a word to eventually get it right.   
  • Avoid finishing sentences for your child. Give him or her time to think about what he or she is trying to say.

For more info on speech development, visit the American-Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

- Dr. Sears