top of page

Speech and Language Development Checklist, 0 to 36 months

Check off the communication skills that your child is demonstrating on a consistent basis.

Lansdowne Children's Centre 0 - 36 month Speech and Language development milestone checklist for parents and caregivers

Click the button below to open and download a PDF document (3MB) that you can print.


By 6 months your child should:

o Turn towards sounds

o Make different cries for different needs, e.g. tired, hungry

o Smile and laugh in response to your smiles and laughs

o Watch your face when you talk

o Make different noises, e.g. coo, gurgle


By 9 months your child should:

o Respond to his/her name

o Understand “no”

o Get what he/she wants by sound and gesture, e.g. reaching to be picked up

o Play social games like ‘peek-a-boo’

o Babble and repeat sound, e.g. “babababa”

o Enjoy being around people


By 12 months your child should:

o Follow simple directions, e.g. sit down

o Use at least three words

o Babble using lots of different sounds

o Shake head for “no”

o Draws your attention to an object by using gestures or sound and looking at you, e.g. looks up to the sky and points to a bird and then looks back at you


By 18 months your child should:

o Understand simple directions, e.g. “put your hat on“ or “go get the doll”

o Point to several body parts

o Understand concepts like “in” or “off”

o Engage in pretend play, e.g. giving a dolla drink

o Use at least 20 words

o Start to put two words together, e.g. “Mommy bye bye”

o Make at least 4 different consonant sounds – b, n, d, g, w, h

o Respond to yes/no and “wh” questions, e.g. “Do you want a drink?”, “Where’s the truck?”


By 24 months your child should:

o Use at least 100 words

o Consistently put two or more words together, e.g. “bubble go up”

o Use at least two pronouns, e.g. “mine”, “you”

o Enjoy playing with other children and start to imitate them

o Be understood 50% of the time by unfamiliar people

o Follow two-step directions, e.g. “go get your car and put in the toy box”


By 30 months your child should:

o Use more than 350 words

o Say their name

o Use some adult grammar, e.g. “two dogs”, “baby’s crying”

o Consistently use 3-4 words in a sentence

o Use action words (eat, jump) and pronouns (you, mine)

o Understand concepts such as big/little, and prepositions such as in, off, under

o Have complex play sequences, e.g. put blocks in a truck, drive it, then dump them

o Produce 2-3 syllable words, e.g. ba-na-na

o Take short turns with other children


By 36 months your child should:

o Use sentence of 4-6 words with adult-like grammar

o Be understood 75% of the time by everyone

o Follow long, complex directions

o Ask “wh” questions eg “what”, “where”

o Use adjectives for colour and size

o Use “in” and “on” when asked “where” questions



If your child does not meet all the communication, speech and language milestones for their age,

we recommend that you complete a referral submission to SmartStart Hub at Lansdowne Children’s Centre for an assessment. We can help connect you with available services supports and resources in our community.



Recent Posts

See All

Accessibility: Our Multi-Year Plan

The following multi-year accessibility plan is prepared in accordance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005...

Post: Blog2_Post
bottom of page