36 language milestones your child should reach before the age of 7

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After the age of 4, your child starts understanding the language better. Here are 36 language milestones for him before he turns 7.

As your child grows older, his understanding of language and speech deepens. He would have achieved these 30 language milestones by the age of 2 and these 51 language milestones by the age of 4.

Within the next 3 years, your child will start talking like an adult, comprehending the nuances of the language. He will even start understanding puns and jokes around them, something that you should look forward to!

So here are the 50 milestones your child should reach by the age of 7. Again, these are mere guidelines. You need to be concerned if he raises the red flags.

Language milestones: age 4 - 5 years

  1. He can point to and identify colours and shapes, for instance, " What is the colour of the triangle?"
  2. Pays attention to a story and answers simple questions about it
  3. Identifies objects by their function- "where does the water come from?"
  4. He can identify different coins and banknotes
  5. Understands “morning”, “afternoon”, “next”
  6. Follows 3 related instructions e.g. “get your colour pencils, draw a picture and give it to mummy”
  7. Has a sentence length of 4 to 8 words
  8. Names common animals and can classify them as wild, domestic, pets, zoo, etc.
  9. Uses grammatically correct sentences
  10. Describes objects and events in his own winding way!
  11. He can describe how his day went, and can also articulate his feelings about it.
  12. Accurately relays a long story
  13. Answers complex 2-part questions involving reasoning logically, for instance, "What do you do when it starts to rain?"
  14. Answers questions related to senses, for instance, “What do you do with your eyes/nose/ears?”

Red flags for language milestones (age 4-5 years)

  • Your child is unable to follow directions.
  • He uses incomplete sentences.
  •  Your child stammer or stutter.

Language milestones: age 5 - 6 years

  1. Understands ‘left’ and ‘right’
  2. Understands most concepts of time
  3. Uses more complex descriptions
  4. Understands spatial relations like ‘on top’, ‘behind’, ‘far’ and ‘near’
  5. Knows his address
  6. Understands ‘same’ and ‘different’
  7. Has a sentence length of 5 – 6 words
  8. Defines objects by their use and can tell what objects are made of
  9. Asks simple questions. for instance" mum, where are you going?"
  10. Names letters (a-z) and numbers (1-20)

Red flags for language milestones (age 5-6 years)

  • He has trouble coping in kindergarten.
  • Unfamiliar adults find him difficult to understand when he talks.

Language milestones: age 6-7 years

  1. Identifies most sounds phonetically
  2. Can form most sound-letter associations, and so, can attempt spellings
  3. Segments sounds into smallest grammatical units
  4. Starts observing punctuations while reading and writing.
  5. He can narrate short stories, (many of them, made up!)
  6. Understands time and space concepts e.g. before/after, second/third
  7. Understands mathematical concepts such as “few”, “many”, “all” and “except”
  8. Can use many descriptive words spontaneously-both adjectives and adverbs
  9. Should be able to repeat sentences as long as nine words
  10. Should know his age
  11. Should have simple time concepts: morning, afternoon, night, day, later, after, while, tomorrow, yesterday, today
  12. Should be using fairly long sentences and should use some compound and some complex sentences

Red flags for language milestones (age 6-7 years)

  • He has trouble coping in kindergarten/school.
  • Unfamiliar adults find him difficult to understand when he talks.

My child has missed a few language milestones

It is okay to miss a few milestones early on in life. Most of the children start understanding languages at a different pace. It is especially true for children who are bilingual or trilingual. However, after the age of 6, your child should be able to meet most of the milestones.

However, if you spot any red flags, you need to act and contact your doctor. He will refer your child to a speech specialist. Again, there is no need to worry if this happens, as an early intervention can work wonders in speech and language learning disabilities.

(Source: Language milestones list compiled by Speech Therapist, Isabel Tan)

Republished with permission from: theAsianParent Singapore

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