vocabulary

Heather - posted on 01/09/2009 ( 13 moms have responded )

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so, my son just had his 18 mth check up, all went well however our dr said that he should have a vocab of 20 words...He doesn't :( i can count 8-10 maybe & a bunch of words i have no idea what he is saying...lol... Is this our fault? i feel so guilty!...anyone? someone eles in the same boat?

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SLT - posted on 06/26/2014

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I hope some of you will find this helpful and not just annoying b/c I'm certainly going to boast a little bit!!
I just sent an email to my parents and my in-laws letting them know that they should be super proud of their grandson b/c our son (and I didn't know this wasn't normal) knows over 100 words at 18 months. He had his 18 month checkup and the doctor asked if he has a vocabulary of ten or more words, I said in Spanish he says about 10 (his nanny is Spanish) but in English it's way more than that. He said "30?" I said more than that. He said "50?" and at that point I hadn't counted and didn't want to OVER estimate, so I said yes, probably 50.
Then on the way home I started counting the words that he says, on his own, and I came up with 80. I just wrote them all down to make sure I wasn't crazy, and he literally says over 110 words, on his own, without prompting, just in the ordinary course of communicating with is. I'll post the list below. I didn't include words that he REPEATS back to me, without initiating them, b/c that to me isn't "knowing" them. For example, if I show him a grape, and ask "do you want grapes?" he'll say "grape" but he has never pointed to a grape in a book or in the store and just outright SAID "grape" without prompting.
We don't do anything "special" with him to help him learn, but I'll admit than I AM A TALKER. I talk to him almost non-stop. When we are on the swings, I'll see a mommy very lovingly pushing her baby on the swing next to us, and she'll be smiling and cooing and aaahing to her baby, but I'm talking to Lucas saying "do you see the bird over there? are birds silly? do they fly? do they say 'tweet tweet'?" and he'll say "tweet" right back to me with a big smile. Things like that MUST have helped with the development of his vocabulary because "genius" does not run in our family ;) That said, I think both his father and I are fairly intelligent (I am a lawyer, being a lawyer doesn’t necessarily requires intelligence but I also happen to love words) and we engage him as often as possible. At dinner we often talk TO him as opposed to AROUND him, if that makes any sense? We ask him questions all the time. “Is Riley [the dog] a good girl?” “Is this popsicle the same color as Barney?” For the people asking what they can do, that’s my advice.
He also feels really good when he answers one of the questions and I clap hands to tell him he is right – he LOVES clapping hands for other children when they do something well – like if a small child goes down the slide on his own I say “good job!!! Look at you go!!!” and Lucas will start clapping to tell the child he did a good job.
This is all part of positive reinforcement too, which I am a huge fan of. His vocabulary MUST have been bolstered by our reinforcement when he says something he recognizes. He hears a noise overhead and asks me “airplane?” and I say “close, it’s a helicopter, it flies like an airplane but it’s a little different” and he says “COPTER!” I didn’t know this was advanced until I started doing some research on-line after today’s appointment. In fact, just yesterday he saw me grab for my keys out of my purse after grocery shopping and he said "keys"; I said "yep baby, these are mommy's keys!” Then when my key got stuck in the front door he said "ut oh, broken!" I honestly thought that was what an 18 month old should be doing. After today’s appointment, I’m even more proud of him 
Also, with regard to learning the alphabet, I think saying and singing the ABCs is great but for some reason I’ve been teaching Lucas the “important” letters instead of the letters “in order”. I wonder if that has helped at all? When we are in the bathtub we have those foamy letters that stick to the wall and I picked out the “N” and told him “‘N’ is for Nana, can you say Nana?” and he has learned “N”, “B” (which is for belly and I stick it on his belly!) and “T” which is for our last name. Those were the three letters on top in the bucket, so I started with those instead of ABC, and now be points to N, B and T in all the alphabet books. Perhaps learning the letters you use most would be helpful; teach them the letter that starts their name? Just a thought. I’m not a teacher or an educator of any type, other than having been a ski instructor and being a mom for the last 18 months, so I don’t claim to have any insight or studies to support what works and what doesn’t – I’m just sharing what I/we have done with our angel so far. The below 110 words are words that he knows and says, on his own, without prompting.
Good luck and I know WHEVER you are with your child(ren) in their development, if you are here looking for guidance you’re an awesome parent because you care!
I was all over the place with this reply but I’m just eager to get it out and share this with you guys – best of luck to each of you!!!

Aleta - posted on 01/26/2009

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Hi! I went through this exact same thing at his 15 month check up. At his 18 month I asked the doctor what she meant by "saying 20 words." Like my son said "dog" for about a week when he was just over a year and then has not said it again since. He has a few words that he uses consistently now but not 20! He has said other words int he past but then will stop. The doctor said it was normal for them to use some words and then stop saying them for a while. So,I just stopped worrying about it. If there were something developmentally wrong with your child, then you would probably have some mommy instinct that would tell you that something wasn't right. Otherwise, I say... "don't worry!"

Kelly - posted on 01/25/2009

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Hey, You should not be feeling bad at all, all children are different, my son is 20 months on 9th feb i dont think he has a vocab of 20 words he does chatter alot but i dont know what he is saying half the time, but they are chatting thats good anyway.



you should not let the doctors tell you otherwise or let them worry you, he is healthy isnt he? and happy that is all that matters hun. and of course as i said he is chatting so dont worry and definatley do not feel guilty. x

Kimberly - posted on 01/15/2009

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My daughter and my son (who is now 4) spoke at an early age and had many words to their vocabulary. My son was speaking sentences at 18 months and my daughter is putting 3-4 word sentences together. I do contribute their early speech to doing sign language with them. I also do agree that each child develops differently. However, one thing that 2 of my friends have experienced while their sons had slow speech development was that they were most likely using/allowing a pacifier too much. What happened was that anytime the child made noise, they would give him/her a pacifier. Later to find out that the baby was just most likely jibber jabbing which helps develop speech. So, I think that limited use of pacifiers could be a good thing!

Claire - posted on 01/14/2009

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well my sone of the same age is speaking more than his brother who is 3!!!!!!!!!



i guess they all just start at different times, dont worrie to much at this point, just enjoy him, it will come when his ready. i think we push our kids to grow up to fast these days when they should not be worring about anything apart from havivg fun.

Beth - posted on 01/14/2009

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You should not feel guilty at all!  I don't know if this is your first child but I think that can make a huge difference.  The first doesn't have older siblings to mimmick and the other thing that is known is boys develop their vocabulary slower than girls.  I think one of the best things you can do is spend a fair amount of time reading books.  Just hearing the words will help him want to copy you.  My son had delayed speech and rhyming books were recommended.  If you truly think it's a problem than I would pursue it.  We had our son evaulated just after age 2 and we were able to start a speech program soon after that.  It has made a world of difference.  As his Mom you will know what's best!

Pattie - posted on 01/14/2009

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I cringed the first time my dr asked me that question!!  I still feel like a fool, because he wants me to tell him how many she can say.  I'm sorry... but I don't count! lol



I think it has alot to do with KNOWING what they are saying.  Luckily mine is a pointer and very insistant, so I have been able to figure out what she says pretty easily.



I wouldn't worry if your son isn't saying as many.  Only if he stops talking altogether or backslides somehow.  He may be busy working on acquiring other skills right now!

Pattie - posted on 01/14/2009

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I cringed the first time my dr asked me that question!!  I still feel like a fool, because he wants me to tell him how many she can say.  I'm sorry... but I don't count! lol



I think it has alot to do with KNOWING what they are saying.  Luckily mine is a pointer and very insistant, so I have been able to figure out what she says pretty easily.



I wouldn't worry if your son isn't saying as many.  Only if he stops talking altogether or backslides somehow.  He may be busy working on acquiring other skills right now!

Dena - posted on 01/14/2009

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what words do ur children say? haylee says hot, hat, puppy, kitty, please, more, juice (which to her means anything in her cup), ball, apple, diaper, book, socks, shoes, boots and then she does animal sounds for puppy, kitty, sheep, horse, frog, cow. were working on colors, so far everything is blue and she can say purple and yellow but she doesn't know what color they are.

Dena - posted on 01/14/2009

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my daughter just in the last couple weeks has started talking a lot. for her is seriously just happened over night all of a sudden she woke up and just talking up a storm and copying everything. so just work on it and read to him and point out simple things that he can understand

Ashley - posted on 01/13/2009

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Dont' worry about it at all. For my daughters 18 month checkup my daughter was not saying many words at all. She was always talking but in her own language. In the last 2 weeks she has started to say and use a few new words each day, and is now starting to use short sentences. As long as he is using talking even if you can't understand it he's practicing and he will start to say actual words when he is ready. all kids do things at there own paces. My daughter didn't start walking until she was 17 months old. she was content sitting and watching things around her then one day she just got up and starting walking around like she had been doing it for weeks. If your not already you can help him but labeling thigns around him. likewhen he reaches for a toy bear , instead of saying do you want that , ask "do you want that bear"

Kaye - posted on 01/09/2009

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Quoting Heather:

vocabulary

so, my son just had his 18 mth check up, all went well however our dr said that he should have a vocab of 20 words...He doesn't :( i can count 8-10 maybe & a bunch of words i have no idea what he is saying...lol... Is this our fault? i feel so guilty!...anyone? someone eles in the same boat?



No... it's not your fault! every child is different... he is probably just storing all the words in his head and then later on, he'll come out with complete sentences as someone told me.  Just keep talking to him... he'll get there eventually.  I have an 19 month old youngest daughter and she doesn't say much like your son... we talk loads to her and we are sure she understands every word, she is just stubborn and won't say it!  Our firstborn daughter was talking by 1 year and she is so advanced for her age.  she will be 4 in two weeks.  So don't worry :-)

Kerrilee - posted on 01/09/2009

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A child is going to learn at his own pace, he is learning, as you said he is saying 8 to 10, dont let doctors worry you like that, each child is different, they grow, crawl and walk at different speeds, enjoy the all the baby talk, my son is 19 months, probably says aorund 20 words and the rest is jibberish, but i love it cause i know when he does start to talk hes never going to stop!

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