Skip to main content

How to Help Late Talkers: Toddler Problems

  • Author:
  • Updated date:

Peachpurple has two kids, a teen and a school age kid. She had been through tough parenting and learned a lot of tips and tricks about kids

Little darling talking on the phone

Little darling talking on the phone

A child seldom needs a good talking to as a good listening to.

~Robert Brault,

Toddler Not Interested in Talking

Majority babies or toddlers begin to say a few words which are not very clear when they are around one year old.

Of course, there are some babies who are slow to pick up words because a parent talks in a long sentence that the toddler couldn't grab hold a single word at a time in order to learn.Therefore, it is important to use single words at first with a baby. Some children who are mentally slow are late talkers.

  1. Most of them use single words at the normal age.
  2. Baby or toddlers are more confuse if the parents or other family members use more than one language to communicate.
  3. For example, chinese family communicate in Mandarin, English and a local dialect would result the child who could not decide which is the mother tongue. It is best advisable to use one language at the first stage and refrain from using slang.
  4. If the baby or toddler seems late with his sound or speech, do not fret over it. Majority of the late talkers who don't talk much until they reach three years of age.
  5. They are equally intelligent and some are bright children with outstanding capabilities.
  6. These children use their five senses and brain to increase the intelligence and understanding.

Interactive Otter

Let the Otter Teach

If you are having a hard time to get your toddler to say a simple word, try this clever electronic gadget to replace your work for a short time. It teaches toddler to say easy words brilliantly.

Kids love adorable turtles and colorful things that make sounds to attract their attention.

Toddlers are curious where the sounds came from and kept pressing the buttons e to get the turtle to keep repeating the same words.

That is how my toddler managed to say "How" which means "Cow" when he pointed on the buttons.

Like a mother duck, pay attention to what your duckling says

Like a mother duck, pay attention to what your duckling says

Tantrums May Hasten Your Toddler To Talk

  • How to control your toddler tantrums
    How do you handle your toddler who screams and yell at the top of his voice when you are shopping, in the car driving or at home when you are busy with housechores? You need to figure out what's wrong before spanking him which may worsen the problem

Reasons Why Toddler Speech Was Delay

  • How early your baby or toddler start to talk depends on his temper, personality and family members encouragement.
  • Baby and toddlers who are outgoing, friendly, bold or aggressive baby talk all the time. Usually, it comes from a family background who are good talkers too.
  • Remember, toddler or babies mimic and imitate whatever a parent says or do. Therefore, as an adult, do take note and cautious what you say in front of them. Do not use foul or bad language, cursing and showing temper.
  • For the quiet and observer type, this child prefers to spend a longer time watching before saying anything.
  • If the parents are always silent, too busy with work; spending less time in communicating among themselves, the toddler feels lack of communication and confidence.
  • Toddler needs lots of love, hugs, attention, praises and words of encouragements to try talking or blabbering their expression instead of crying.

Scroll to Continue


Arrgh!!  Why are you laughing at me ?!

Arrgh!! Why are you laughing at me ?!

Do not Laugh or Embarrass Your Toddler

  • He fears to be laugh at when he pronounce a word inaccurately. Being laughed and teased at will decrease the chances for him to improve whereby, he will shy away or hide behind his parents
  • When the toddler begins to talk, he cries less. He learns to express his anger in words by saying,"NO !", and this will decrease his temper tantrums.
  • He will start imitating adults and other children to improve his speech and vocabulary skills. He will start to enjoy his new talking ability when someone answers him.
  • Speak to him clearly, give simple instructions and ask questions but don't give him too many choices. For example; "Do you want to eat biscuits or bread?". Avoid saying,"What do you want to eat?" because he doesn't know how to answer. Even though he has something in mind of what he wanted to eat, he doesn't know how to name or describe the food.

Pausing to listen to an airplane in the sky, stooping to watch a ladybug on a plant, sitting on a rock to watch the waves crash over the quayside — children have their own agendas and timescales.

As they find out more about their world and their place in it, they work hard not to let adults hurry them. We need to hear their voices.

~Cathy Nutbrown

Use his toys and pretend to be talking to your toddler

Use his toys and pretend to be talking to your toddler

Tips to Help Your Toddler To Talk

#1 Pay attention to what your toddler says.

  • Sometimes, you can't understand what he says due to mispronouncing just about any word.
  • When saying "p","b" and "m", he can watch your lips and see how the sound is formed. However, "k" and "g" are tougher because we have to use the back of our mouth to produce the sound. Now, there is no way he can see that!
  • Make a guess and if it is right, correct the child in a friendly manner. Do not scold or nag at him. He may pronounce "goat" as "koat" instead. Correct him by saying, "gh + oat = goat" Do the "gh" for the letter "g".

2 ) Read books to your toddler

  • Use his favorite toys to "talk" to your toddler.

He will find amazed that his teddy is talking to him. Make it as if the teddy is asking him a question or ask him to do something. He will gladly perform the task without hesitation. Your toddler may "talk" to his teddy when questions are asked.

  • Read story books with pictures.

Alternatively if you kids can't sit and listen to stories, try picture dictionary books or pop up books with words. Point to the picture and create your own stories. Kids love to listen to mom's made up stories. Trust me, my boy asked me why did my story kept changing even though it was the same picture ( When he was able to talk fluently )

A is for Apple

Point to the apples and ask your toddler what is it. Give him a few seconds to search the word in his little brain

Point to the apples and ask your toddler what is it. Give him a few seconds to search the word in his little brain

3) Repeat after me ( like a broken cassette tape)

  • Always make it a point at objects or food and name it. Your toddler may repeat after you but don't force him to say. Otherwise, you will scare him off that learning is hard and scary.
  • Make sure your toddler knows his name. When you want him to do something, say his name and then the action. Example " Ben , take the ball ". Otherwise, you can repeat his name during your bedtime song when you pat him to sleep.

4) Do not use obscene words

  • Talk as much as possible but never use harsh words or vulgar words in front of your toddler.
  • The more you talk, the more he learn to copy after you.
  • His little brain had absorbed all your conversation into his memory.
  • As he grows older, he will remember what you had said and repeat your words when he can talk fluently.
  • Your toddler becomes a "talking parrot" when he could start talking.
  • So, refrain from using obscene words especially when you are frustrated.

Handmade Flash Cards

I made these flash cards from fliers and milk powder boxes

I made these flash cards from fliers and milk powder boxes

Use Flash Cards with ABC to Teach Your Toddler To Talk

  • How to make ABC Flascards
    I teach my toddler to learn the alphabet at home by reading, playing online alphabet games, create games at home and during shopping trips. Shows great results.

5) Talk and Play Activities

  • Make talking as a fun activity. Little toddlers love to have fun while learning. Remember that your little toddler gets bored easily. Hence, create fun activities to keep him talking.
  • Play peek a boo with him. Hide and seek is a fun game for your little ones to hunt you down. However, do not hide far away from him as he maybe afraid when he thought that he had "lost" you. Make noises like cats, puppy or say "Guess where I am" to attract his attention. Then say "You found me!" when he succeeded. He will repeat after your short phrase when he is excited.
  • Choose picture and make noises. Flash cards, pop up books, magazines and real objects are useful to help him to recognize the sound and speech tone.
  • Let him guess what is the object or animal. Ask him simple question as you point to the object. Point to a teddy bear and make a bear roar ( not a scary one!).
  • Fun is endless, think anything out of the box! Visit the park, shopping mall, market where there are many things to see and learn the names of the objects.

Do not be afraid

Oh No! I can't TALK!!

Oh No! I can't TALK!!

6) Strategies that helped my toddler to TALK

Focus: I tried to focus on what my toddler is trying to say.

  • When he wants to eat, he said "Mum Mum".
  • I touch his tummy and ask him "Hungry? Eat? "
  • He nodded his little head.
  • Then I repeated my word" Eat, okay let us eat.
  • He was happy, skipping while repeating "Eat! Eat!"

Bed or bread?

Bread, a food that he love to eat

Bread, a food that he love to eat

Kids are great Imitators!

  • Kids Imitates
    Children love to imitate adults but they don't know whether their actions are right or wrong because they are innocent. Therefore, adults should be wary of words used and body language shown.

7) Imitate your toddler's talk

  • When I was devastated he couldn't repeat the words I had said, I imitated his words instead which turned out a blessing in disguise!
  • Although it is wrong, I repeated after him which he found it fun. He became the teacher for once.
  • When he said "bed" for bread , I said "bed?" He enjoyed when I repeated everything he said.
  • Then I said the right word "Bh-red, Bread! " and he repeated after me "Bh-red, bread! ".
  • I clapped my hands excitedly and he imitated my actions too.
  • Don't forget compliments. Kids loved to be praised.


the playground where kids love to be and learn new words

the playground where kids love to be and learn new words

8) Expose to new places

  • He likes to go to the park, playground, supermarket and shopping malls.
  • I frequently make it a point to show him new things and tell him what it is.
  • Point and say is the perfect way to show him the REAL things, not just from the books. He got excited!

My toddler loves this nursery songs

Learn from the professional!

9) Sing and dance

  • Sing nursery rhyme. He loves to watch kid's TV program in the morning, especially the nursery rhymes. He hummed according to the song and danced along with the character.
  • Dance and move your body. I joined in his acts, shaking hands in the air, moving body by twisting here and there and started to sing along. Soon, he was able to catch a few words too.
  • Besides nursery rhymes, try birthday songs, follow the leader are great songs for kids.
  • Play the songs from laptop, DVD player, radio or watch TV programs that are educational with him.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2010 peachy


Haydee Anderson from Hermosa Beach on September 01, 2010:

nice hub, i just noticed that early talkers are from parents who always makes time to talk with their babies. also try to avoid to baby talk to your baby for they might bring it until they are already toddlers.

Related Articles