Speech and Language Milestones, Ages 1 to 3 Years
Speech and language development milestones relate to two areas:
- Receptive language. This is the ability to understand words and sounds.
- Expressive language. This is the ability to use speech and gestures to communicate meaning.
Most 1-year-olds start to understand the meanings of words. Their receptive language grows from understanding names of people and objects to being able to follow simple requests sometime between ages 1 and 2. Expressive language advances from primarily using gestures and babbling at age 1, to using words, simple phrases, and some early sentence structures between ages 2 and 3.
1-year-olds (12 months to 24 months):
2-year-olds (24 months to 36 months):
Current as of: February 28, 2023
Author: Healthwise Staff
Clinical Review Board: All Healthwise education is reviewed by a team that includes physicians, nurses, advanced practitioners, registered dieticians, and other healthcare professionals.