Stages Of Speech Development: 9 Easily Noticeable Phases To Accurately Track And Encourage Your Child's Development

Stages of speech development: 9 Easily noticeable phases to accurately track and encourage your child's development

What are the different stages of speech development?

Even the proudest parent has to admit that their brilliant and amazing child didn't always speak in perfect understandable words, but started out with cries and burps. Only gradually did these transform themselves into 'Mommy' and 'Daddy' and of course eventually ' I wandered lonely as a cloud' or 'Itsy Bitsy Spider'.

Stages of speech development are very definite stages and every child goes through these in order. But not every child spends as long on each stage as the next.

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9 Easily Distinguishable Stages of Speech Development

  1. It begins with Simple Reaction - cold, hunger, pain - all these will stimulate a cry. This stage will last about 2 months. These noises also help a child to learn to control their airflow and so prepare them for more adult speech.

  2. Then comes Babbling. The child is trying out all the possible sounds and so you get 'Ga,ga,ga' or 'Bh, bh, bh.' Or even 'Ga, Bah, Coo'. They will often glide from high to low just as adult sentences do. Such cooing is a softer sound than crying and the child is aware of the response he is getting. A child will also turn towards new sounds and jump at loud ones, but be calmed by a gentle response.

  3. By about 16 weeks the baby Can Differentiate Between Vocal Tones - they can tell the difference between anger and humour, but it will be some months before he can consistently express his emotions by tone. The technical people call these vocalisations, but eventually the day will come when the baby tries out 'Pa,Pa' or 'Ma,Ma'. 'Wow, what a response!' and so the baby tries out that again - same reaction, smiles all round.

  4. By six months of age baby is watching you carefully when you talk and respond with His Own Sounds. When he is hungry he will cry in a different way than when he is in pain or frustrated.

  5. Long before he Articulates The Necessary Words the baby will understand lots of words - drink, no, mine, doggy, bye bye. He will recognise his own name.

  6. Then come the Joining Up Of Pairs Of Words 'Nice doggy'; 'My dolly', although these may be hard to distinguish at first. At this point there are no verbs, but they arrive quite quickly. Baby can understand and respond to questions such as 'Where is your nose?' or 'Do you want a biscuit?'

  7. Up until 18 months old most children develop at about the same rate, but after this time Progress Is More Individual. Most of them will be acquiring about 20 words per month, most of these being nouns, because the child needs to name things they want.

  8. At two years of age he can Understand More Complicated Directions and can pick out an object from a group e.g. his cup from a selection on the table.

  9. By three years old your child can Listen To A Story And Then Answer Questions and can have conversations. He begins to add verb endings - 'run' becomes 'running'. By 4 they can tell you the story or give you directions 'Fix this please'. His sentences sound almost like adult ones - your child is ready to go out into the world - at least as far as the local kindergarten.


3 Take-home tips from stages of speech development

  1. Since children all go through the same definite speech development steps, and they pretty much happen in this order, use this order to track and determine where you child’s speech development is.

  2. Once you’ve pinpointed where your child’s development is, you’ll immediately also know what the next stage of development is… for which you can then use specific actions to stimulation and encourage proper further development.

  3. Carefully track your baby’s speech development, but more important is to consistently take deliberate action to encourage further and accelerated development.


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