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Development Chart

Speech and Language Development

By age 3...

  • More than half of a child's speech should be understandable to a "new" listener.
  • Children should be making the following sounds: all vowels; p,b,m.
  • Children should be making short sentences.
  • Children should be asking simple questions.
  • Children should be following simple 2- step directions
  • Children should be using simple plurals and pronouns
By age 4...
  • Most, if not all, of a child's speech should be understandable to a "new" listener.
  • Children should be making the following sounds: w,n,ng,d,t,g,k
  • Children should be speaking in sentences.
  • Children should be using most pronouns and plurals.
  • Children should be able to identify at least 6 colors.
By age 5...
  • Children should be making the following sounds: y,f,v,l
  • Children should be using past tense verbs
  • Children should be able to follow 2 and 3- step directions
  • Children should be able to listen to stories for 10-15 minutes
By age 6...
  • Children may be making the following sounds: s,z,th,sh,ch,zh,r. However, these target sounds may not be fully developed until age eight.
  • Children should be speaking with longer and grammatically correct sentences. 
How can I tell if my child needs speech or language therapy?

To identify speech and/ or language impairments, a child must be evaluated by a speech-language pathologist. During the evaluation, the clinician will use both formal and informal tests to compare your child's abilities to developmental "norms". While it depends upon the age and needs of a child, an evaluation usually takes 1-2 hours. A comprehensive speech and language evaluation will look at all areas in which a disability is suspected (articulation, language, fluency and voice). 

How do I contact a speech/ language clinician?

If your child is school- age, there will be a speech-language pathologist assigned to their school. Contact your school for more information.
If your child is not yet enrolled in school, contact Child Find 443-809-3017

What are Language Disorders?

Language disorders are marked by a delay or differences in the development of language skills among same age peers. Language skills are necessary for expressing ideas and for understanding thoughts and ideas necessary to access the core curriculum.

What is a Speech/ Language Delay?

Many children have speech or language delays that are developmental in nature. Not all delays require direct therapy services. Sometimes, problems can be corrected at home or by the child becoming more aware of his/her own speech or language differences.