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Should I worry that my 2-year-old mispronounces many words?

Should I worry that my 2-year-old mispronounces many words?


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A 2-year-old will typically mispronounce just about any word. Most can say "p," "b," and "m" sounds easily because they can watch your lips and see how the sounds are formed. Consonants such as "k" and "g" are tougher, because they're produced at the back of the mouth, and your child can't actually see how to make the sound.

Producing a "t" instead of a "k" is a common substitution and is nothing to be worried about unless your child is still doing it past the age of 5. Other sounds that may present difficulties for your child between now and the time he turns 3 include

* "r" pronounced as a "w," such as "wabbit" instead of "rabbit"

* "l" pronounced as a "w" or a "y," such as "yeg" instead of "leg"

* "s" lisped as a "th" sound, such as "thun" instead of "sun"

* "sh" pronounced as an "s," such as "sip" instead of "ship"

* "ch" pronounced as a "sh," such as "wash" instead of "watch"

* "g" pronounced as a "d," such as "dame" instead of "game"

* "v" pronounced as a "b," such as "ban" instead of "van"

* "f" pronounced as a "p," such as "pish" instead of "fish"

* consonant blends such as tr, dr, sl, sn, sm, st, bl mispronounced by leaving one of the sounds off ("stop" becomes "top" or "sop")

* consonants in the middle of words left out, so "baseball" becomes "bayball"

* words with more than one syllable shortened or simplified, so "Emily" becomes "Memmy" or "Emmy"

Sometimes the difficulty in pronunciation has less to do with a particular letter sound than with the organization of the word itself. For example, your child may say "Dadda" or "Daddy," so you know he can make a "d" sound, yet he pronounces "dog" as "gog." In fact, he's mispronouncing it because the "g" sound comes right after it. Since the "d" is pronounced in the front of the mouth and the "g" is pronounced in the back, saying "dog" requires some tongue gymnastics that may be hard for your 2-year-old.

While mispronunciation is nothing for you to worry about, it's still important that you do all you can to encourage your child's language development. Read lots of picture books, and encourage him to point out and name objects. And, of course, have lots of face-to-face conversations so that he can see you as you talk. You can serve as a model while he works on his own verbal skills.


Watch the video: Cute Words That My Toddler Cant Say Part 2 - Funny 3 Year Old (July 2022).


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