Communicating with our kids is one of the most pleasurable and rewarding parts of parenting. Children learn by taking in information through daily interactions with us and the world around them.
How Toddlers Communicate
Between the ages of 2 and 3, toddlers have a huge jump in language skills:
At age 2, most kids say at least 2 words together. By 30 months, they are saying 50 words or more and are understood about half of the time. They are using words like “I,” “me,” or “we.” By 30 months, most kids can follow 2-step instructions, like "Pick up the ball and bring it to Daddy."
By age 3, a toddler's vocabulary usually is more than 200 words. Kids can string together 2- or 3-word sentences. They can talk with you in a conversation that has at least 2 back-and-forth exchanges. Other people can understand your toddler most of the time.
What Should I Do?
The more interactive conversation and play kids are involved in, the more they learn. Reading books, singing, playing word games, and simply talking to toddlers builds their vocabulary and teaches listening skills. Here are a few suggestions to help encourage your child's communication skills:
Talk to your toddler about what they did during the day or plan to do tomorrow: "I think it's going to rain this afternoon. What shall we do?" Or discuss the day's events at bedtime.