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How Many Words Should My Toddler Actually Be Saying??

women arranging letters for kid to spell

Want to know a ๐Ÿ”‘ indicator of language development in toddlers??โฃ


Their ๐ฐ๐จ๐ซ๐ ๐œ๐จ๐ฎ๐ง๐ญ! โฃ


As a Speech Therapist who has helped hundreds of toddlers start communicating, I often first ask parents how many words their toddler is using. โฃ


๐Ÿ’กThis is because a toddlerโ€™s ๐ž๐ฑ๐ฉ๐ซ๐ž๐ฌ๐ฌ๐ข๐ฏ๐ž ๐ฅ๐š๐ง๐ ๐ฎ๐š๐ ๐ž (aka words theyโ€™re saying) develops early on and at a rapid pace! Itโ€™s also a pretty definitive indicator of whether a toddlerโ€™s language is developing on track. โฃ





12 months

1 word

5+ words

14+ words

18 months

10 words

50+ words

180+ words

24 months

50 words

300+ words

440+ words

36 months

250 words

1000+ words


But, most of the info out there about how many words a toddler โ€œshouldโ€ have is pretty ambiguous ๐Ÿคช So let me clear it up for you! โฌ‡๏ธโฃ


๐Ÿ’›โ€œMilestoneโ€ refers to the skill that ๐Ÿ—๐ŸŽ% ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐ค๐ข๐๐ฌ achieve by a certain age.โฃ

๐Ÿ’›The โ€œaverageโ€ is what ๐Ÿ“๐ŸŽ% ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐ค๐ข๐๐ฌ achieve by a certain ageโฃ

๐Ÿ’›The โ€œabove the expected rangeโ€ is what about ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ“% ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐ค๐ข๐๐ฌ achieve by that age.โฃโฃ


If a toddler is using anywhere ๐›๐ž๐ญ๐ฐ๐ž๐ž๐ง ๐ญ๐ก๐ž โ€œ๐ฆ๐ข๐ฅ๐ž๐ฌ๐ญ๐จ๐ง๐žโ€ ๐š๐ง๐ โ€œ๐š๐ฏ๐ž๐ซ๐š๐ ๐žโ€ ๐ซ๐š๐ง๐ ๐ž, that is considered on track for that age. โฃ๐Ÿ’ฏโฃ


Remember, โ€œwords usedโ€ refers to a childโ€™s ๐ฌ๐ฉ๐ž๐š๐ค๐ข๐ง๐  vocabulary. Sign language, animal noises and word approximations all count as words! As long as theyโ€™re being used ๐ข๐ง๐๐ž๐ฉ๐ž๐ง๐๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ฅ๐ฒ (not repeating someone), ๐ข๐ง๐ญ๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ข๐จ๐ง๐š๐ฅ๐ฅ๐ฒ and ๐œ๐จ๐ง๐ฌ๐ข๐ฌ๐ญ๐ž๐ง๐ญ๐ฅ๐ฒ!

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