Speech, Language & Hearing Developmental Milestones for a 2-Year-Old

Speech, Language & Hearing Developmental Milestones for a 2-Year-Old

Cleveland Hearing and Speech Center Parent Tip of the Week

By Michelle Foye MA CCC-SLP, Director
of Speech Language and Learning Services
Cleveland Hearing & Speech Center

Each child develops at a different rate, but there are some milestones that can generally be expected by certain ages. This includes certain speech, language and hearing developmental milestones. The list below includes some typical milestones for children who are 2 years old.

(Check out these posts regarding younger children: milestones for babies who are 6 months old and milestones for children who are 1 year old.)

  • Says more words every month, has over 50 intelligible words
  • Expresses intentions using vocalizations, gestures, and words (ex. greeting, protesting, requesting, labeling, answering, repeating, practicing, calling)
  • Verbalizes “no”
  • Mastery of vowels and the following speech sounds m, n, h, w, b, t, d — these sounds should be intelligible 90% of the time that they are produced
  • Uses names of most familiar objects and refers to self with full name
  • Possessive is emerging (ex. Daddy car)
  • Uses some one- or two-word questions (ex. “What’s that?” Where kitty?” “Go bye-bye?”) usually noun + verb or noun + adjective format
  • Uses many different consonant sounds at the beginning of words, able to produce words with a vowel-consonant-vowel structure and a consonant-vowel-consonant structure
  • Puts two words together (ex. “more cookie” “no juice” “mommy book”)
  • Typical word combinations are agent + action; action + object; action + location; entity + location; entity + attribute; demonstrative + attribute
  • Asks questions by raising intonation at the end of a phrase
  • Intelligible approximately 65% of the time
  • Makes overextensions in which a word is used for objects outside its conventional definition (ex. calling a cat ‘doggie’ or the mailman ‘daddy’)
  • Takes turns during conversation
  • Topics expand as experiences and vocabularies grow but dialogue is limited to a few brief turns in conversation
  • Typically do not initiate conversation and conversation is focused on stimuli in the direct environment
  • Points to a few body parts when asked
  • Responds appropriately to yes/no questions by nodding or shaking head
  • Comprehends approximately 300 words
  • Follows simple commands and understands simple questions (ex. “Roll the ball” “Kiss the baby” “Where’s your shoe?”)
  • Uses words associated with current activities and surroundings
  • Uses words primarily to identify objects and request action and information
  • Uses words that are easy to say and have meaning to them
  • Often talk to themselves for practice and play
  • Able to imitate words and sounds, including sounds from the environment (ex. animals, motors)
  • Makes comments and requests
  • Understands more than they are able to say

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