20 Key Language Milestones
It's amazing how quickly those babbles and coos turn into "Why?" and "No!" Here's what to expect when.
From birth to 12 months, your child may:
- make eye contact and smile
- babble and coo to communicate comfort or happiness
- move arms and legs to express joy, excitement, or anger
- repeat babbles, such as "da da" or "ma ma"
- by 8 to 12 months: understand directions, such as putting a hat on his head when told to do so; say his first words
- use sounds and utterances with adult intonation
- begin to combine words
- engage in telegraphic speech — one- or two-word combinations, such as "Daddy come," "I fall," or "All gone"
- speak in nearly complete sentences
- use pronouns, conjunctions, prepositions, articles, and possessives
- play with language, making up words and rhymes or repeating chants: "Nicey, dicey, all insidey, apple pie!"
- ask many why questions, as well as how and when
- tell a simple story, but not in sequence
- take turns in conversations, but still interrupt to talk about himself
- continue to expand her vocabulary to about 5,000 to 8,000 words
- articulate his thoughts with adultlike speech
- be aware that a word can have more than one meaning
- begin to use language to control situations
- often misunderstand words and use them in a humorous way
- carry on conversations with others, yet still want to dominate