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Your baby's speech and language skills from birth to 30 months

From the time they are born, children start communicating. Very early in their lives, they learn to understand what you are saying and to make sounds of their own. They are beginning to develop speech and language skills that will help them make friends and learn to read, and later, to succeed at school and in life. Communication skills are critical to your child's future success.

About one in 10 children needs help developing normal speech and language skills. Without this help it's a struggle to listen and talk, it's difficult to learn to read, and it's hard to play with other children.

Developmental milestones

These developmental milestones show some of the skills that mark the progress of young children as they learn to communicate. There are also some tips on how you can help your child develop speech and language skills. If your child is not meeting one or more of these milestones, please contact your local Preschool Speech and Language Program.

By 6 months

By 9 months

By 12 months

By 18 months

By 24 months

By 30 months

Babies like it when you:

Toddlers like it when you:

Ontario's Preschool Speech and Language Program

Ontario's Preschool Speech and Language Program provides services to children from birth to when they start school. Assessment and a range of treatment services are provided to children and their families across the province in many different communities, as close to home as possible.

If you have concerns about your baby's speech and language skills you can get help from the Preschool Speech and Language Program. Program staff can teach you how to help your child's communication skills develop, to give him or her the best opportunity for healthy development.

Ontario's Preschool Speech and Language Program provides its services at no cost to you and does not require a doctor's referral.

It's never too early to help.

For more information contact your local Preschool Speech and Language Program, or call the Government of Ontario INFOline number given below.

For more information, contact:

ServiceOntario
1-866-821-7770
TTY 1-800-387-5559
www.ontario.ca/children