Children who are not talking at 2 years of age are considered to be late talkers. We expect a 2 year old to have around 50 words and be putting words together. If your 2 year old is late to start talking this is a good time to get advice from a Speech Pathologist.
In the meantime, here are some strategies to get them going.
- Accept any form of communication.
It is all about getting the message across. If your child gestures, points, grunts or brings objects to you, respond to the meaning. “You want your shoes on.” “Look, a big truck.” “You’ve finished. No more.” “Yes, it’s raining.”
- Say what you think your child would say.
When your child gestures for you to pick them up, say “Up” or “You want to get up”. When they can’t get the lid off, say “Stuck. Mummy help.”
- Give your child lots of opportunities to use the words or communication they do
If your child says “oh-oh”, model it lots of times during the day and allow time for them to imitate. If your child can wave “bye-bye”, encourage them to do it often. Wave and say “bye-bye” to the animals as you put in them in the barn and the soft toys as you put them to bed.
- Interpret what your child is trying to say to others.
Help your child out when they try to communicate with others. “You want Nana to read a book”. “Yes. That’s your new truck.” “You don’t want any more dinner.”
- Keep the interactions going by getting your child to point or show you things.
“I’ve got a sheep. Can you get more sheep?” “Baby is thirsty. Give her a drink.” “What else can we put in the shopping basket?”
Remember ….. it is important to follow your child’s lead. Match your language to what your child is doing. Use every-day routines to model language and encourage your child to communicate. Don’t be afraid to use the same language over and over. Children love repetition.
Sue Cameron is a Certified Practicing Speech Pathologist with Therapy Connect, a unique private therapy service offering high quality speech and occupational therapy supports, online, using videoconferencing. “Providing online therapy means that families can access Therapy from Anywhere at Anytime”.
Therapy Connect is owned and operated by Simone Dudley and Sue Cameron. Simone is an Occupational Therapist with 20 years clinical experience working in paediatrics across both the public and private sectors. Sue is a certified speech pathologist with more than 25 years experience working in health and education.
Contact Therapy Connect to find out more.