Over the last few weeks we have shared ways in which Speech and Language Pathologists (SLP) treat children with a variety of Speech, Language and Swallowing/Feeding difficulties. In those articles we focused on birth to 6 months and through to 3 years. This week’s article will cover your child’s development for their second, third and fourth years of age. It should be noted that no two children develop the same set of skills at the same time and therefore the information presented below should only be used as a guideline. If you have concerns regarding your child’s Speech, Language or Feeding/Swallowing development, you should contact your physician to determine if your child should be evaluated by a Speech and Language Pathologist.

 

This week’s article will cover your child’s development from 3-4 Years

 

Sound Development
  • 2-4 years: /b,k,g,d,t,“ng”/
  • 2.5-4 years: /f,y/
  • 3-6 years: /r,l,s/
  • 3.5-7 years: /”ch”,”sh”,z/
Speech Intelligibility (Percentage of time a child is understood)
  • 2-3 years: 50-75%
  • 4-5 years: 75-90%
Average Phrase/Sentence Length
  • 35-40 months: 3.0-3.75
  • Asking “wh” questions
  • 41-46 months: 3.75-4.5
  • Uses locative “up, down”
  • Uses “and”, simple sentences
  • 47+ months: 4.5+
  • Adds negative questions, uses “nobody, no more”
Pragmatics / Social Language Development
  • Follows 2-step related directions without cues
  • Takes turns and plays cooperatively
  • Relates personal experiences through verbalization
  • Separates from primary caregiver easily
  • Frequently practices conversation skills by talking to self
  • Begins dramatic play
  • Acting out whole scenes
  • Shows frustration if not understood
  • Expresses ideas and feelings
Concepts
  • Follows quantity directions “empty, a lot”
  • Follows equality directions “same, both”
  • Understands “next to, beside, between”
  • Identifies colors
  • Matches one-to-one
  • Points to object that is different from others
  • Uses position concepts “behind, in front, around”
Vocabulary/Number of words spoken
  • 36 months (3 years): 1,000 words
  • 42 months: 1,200 words
  • 48 months (4 years): 1,600 words
Listening
  • Attends to name being called from another room
  • Understands simple “wh” questions
  • Understands most simple questions pertaining to their activities and environment
  • Improves listening skills and begins to learn from listening
Feeding ·       Children continue to eat what the rest of the family is eating. Continue to be cautious with high risk choking items such as hot dogs, popcorn, nuts, olives, hard candy, raw carrots, marshmallows, peanut butter, grapes, ice cubes and gum. Foods such as hot dogs, grapes should be cut lengthwise.

If you have concerns regarding your child’s Speech, Language or Feeding/Swallowing development, you should contact your physician to determine if your child should be evaluated by a Speech and Language Pathologist (SLP). If you have questions you can reach an SLP at North Country Hospital, Rehabilitation Department by calling 334-3260.

 

Submitted by: Kate Bailey, MS, CCC-SLP and Crystal O’Keefe, MA, CCC-SLP, Speech-Language Pathologists at North Country Hospital, who combined have over 23 years of experience.