First words

One of these milestones is learning to speak. From about the age of a year, you will start to hear words like mama and dada. Until then, all you'll hear is a lot of babbling and cooing. From this age, your child will pick up words from everyone around them and between 18 months and two years, he'll start forming two and four-word sentences. His ability to say more will grow as your child develops mentally and emotionally. He'll be increasingly able to express what he wants, hears, sees, thinks and feels.

How to get your toddler talking

When you hear your child's first words, you'll want to encourage them to say more and more. Even as you do so, keep in mind that children develop at their own pace. So even as you urge them on, expect gradual rather than immediate or fast progress.

You can get your toddler talking by:

1. Singing along

Toddlers learn from hearing something over and over. Lullabies which have a lot of repeat words and phrases are therefore perfect for teaching your young one new words. Over time, they will start to recall words and to say them out loud.

2. Reading

Another thing that toddlers enjoy is hearing fun, easy words in a story. Reading story books to them is, therefore, an excellent way to get your toddler talking. Looking at your face as you say the words will delight them and they'll try to imitate you and say them as well.

3. Keep talking to them

You can also teach your toddler words by speaking to them as you do things in your house or get around in your car. Keep repeating short words like go, car, door, eat, milk and others and your baby will soon get them and saying them when they see these items.

4. Repeating

Your child is at the very early stages of mental development, so they forget things quickly and easily. To get your toddler talking, you, therefore, need to repeat words and phrases often so that they grasp it and remember it.

According to some experts, adults need to hear something 28 times before it is ingrained in their mind. That should give you an idea of how much more your toddler needs to hear things.

The sentiment is supported by Dr. John Medina, who is a father as well as a development biologist. He agrees that the way to get your toddler talking is to repeat words to them a lot.

Your part

As the parent, teacher of caregiver of a toddler,  you play a major role in their language development. Do the above every day and help them develop their speech and to be able to express their wants, feelings, and thoughts.

Even as you do so, do keep track of their progress to be sure your child is hitting milestones as expected.  This way, you will be able to detect a problem, and you can bring it to the attention of your doctor so that corrective action can be taken early.

Have fun teaching your toddler words and don't be stressed or anxious about it. During their early years, children learn mainly through games. Use games and also lullabies and songs with repeated words and your toddler is sure to join in and learn to say different words.