It’s not as easy to find language development activities for toddlers as a new parent. You want to help your toddler build language, but you might not be sure how or if it’s needed.
As a new mom, especially a pandemic mom, you might be unable to access information like before 2020. Most of the time, you have to call or ask your doctor.
Understanding why these developmental activities are essential to 2 Year Old Speech milestones will keep you in the know for when it comes time for doctor’s appointments and when you are home with your toddler.
When I was my son, my son’s age, I wasn’t speaking. It took me until I was closer to five to develop language. My son is 20 months, and by this age should be able have about three to eight words in his vocabulary.
Here are 4 Language Development Activities for Toddlers 18 – 24 Months to check out now.
Language development activities for toddlers
You first have to figure out how your child learns. Since genetics play a role in retaining most of the time, think about how to learn and take in information.
A visual learner like myself must show me how to do something before connecting the dots. An auditory learner needs you to tell them verbally what they need to do. Quick examples of both:
Visual: Youtube Tutorials
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Auditory: Podcast or Audio Books
There are five other ways of learning: kinaesthetic, social, solitary, verbal, and logical. The most common learners (which most people fall into are):
- Visual learners
- Auditory learners
- Kinesthetic learners
- Reading/writing learners
After discovering the best way your child learns, you must develop a plan to help them build language. For us, repetition and visual prompts will be the key to my son’s success.
One Word Syllables
When building a language, you have to start slow. You can’t expect to say it works like “television” your first time trying. It’s the same when teaching your baby how to build language.
First, you want to start with easy words that your child will interact with daily. Here are some examples: Book, Dog, Cat
The key is to use the words and say them phonetically to understand what and how you are saying.
Go slow! I usually say it three times in a row.
Again, since my son is a visual learner, he will look at my mouth to see how I say the word. He is paying attention to how my lips are shaped, the sound, and taking notes.
Our therapist recommended that when we teach my son a new word since he is a visual learner, he put the object in his mouth to see it and start building meaning behind it.
For example, if you want your child to pick up the “book,” you would hold the book to your mouth and say ” book.” Your child will look at your mouth and the book and associate that item with that word.
It won’t happen immediately, but over time you will notice that if you say “book,” your child will understand what a “book” is and be able to give the time to you.
Consistency and repetition are going to be key!
Use What You Have
You don’t have to buy new toys or items; you can use what you currently have to help. I have done 15-20 mins daily while playing with my son.
I try to do it when he is in a good mood. Not high pressure, and I don’t ask him to repeat the word. I will pick up a toy or item, say what it is and say it slowly.
By doing it this way, I have noticed that he has been paying attention to my lips. It’s fun for both of us. If you have a dog, as I do, they always find a way to be in the mix. Cooper, our corgi, makes sure to help out in his way.
Here are our current toy baskets. I alternate between the bins for variety and clean up after we finish playing.
Other Ways to Help toddler build language
Of course, if your child is having trouble speaking, you should always talk with your doctor for the best treatment. I’m not a medical professional, just a mom sharing my experiences to help other parents.
There could be other reasons your young toddler might have a speech delay. Autism or neurologic issues are examples of what could be causing a delay.
Those would need to be tested if you have more concerns or suspect something else is wrong.
For more information on the other ways of learning, you can check out this post, which goes into depth about the topic.
Final thoughts on language development activities for toddlers.
My husband and I attended our son’s 18-month wellness check-up; our pediatrician told us to speak to a specialist if he wasn’t speaking in a few months. Fast forward to September 2021, when my hubs and I went to a specialist to figure out how bad the delay was.
It turns out the delay that I had was much worse than what my son has, which is excellent, and we received some great tools to help him develop language in the next three to six months, so by the time he is closer to two and three he will be right on track with other kids his age.
Of course, my son will go to the therapist 1-2x per week, but here are the critical takeaways for a parent wanting to help develop language with their young toddler (18 – 24 months)
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