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Toddlers' Language Development from 30-36 Months


toddler playing with playdough and a rolling pin


By the age of 30 to 36 months, your toddler's language skills have grown by leaps and bounds.

Your child probably peppers you with questions and loves to talk to others.  

Here's what else to expect at this age.

Language Milestones

Between 30 and 36 months, a typical toddler:

  • Tells stories, sings nursery rhymes, and does finger plays.
  • Repeats five word sentences.
  • Talks to himself or herself about recent events and make believe characters.
  • Uses social words: "please," "thank you," "hello."
  • Names most body parts.

Play and Activity

Continue to take the time to talk to your toddler and ask about the things that interest him or her - this is an invaluable way to encourage language development.

Here are some other tips for supporting your child’s language skills:

  • Sing number songs and rhymes like Five Little Monkeys.
  • Ask open ended questions: "What did you see on your walk?"
  • Be prepared to answer lots of questions.
  • Instead of always answering your toddler’s questions, occasionally ask: "What do you think?"
  • Make up silly rhymes.
  • Invent songs.
  • Read to your toddler often.

Other Language Milestones

Between 30 and 36 months your toddler may also:

  • Use and understand direction and position words, such as "around," "backwards," "forward," "inside," and "underneath."
  • Comment on pictures in books.
  • Show an understanding of story plots and act them out using puppets or dolls.
  • Answer complex questions, such as "What is this?" or "How did you do that?"
  • Respond to requests: "Go find your coat, please," or "Please get a paper towel."

Resources & Links

HealthLink BC: Speech and Language Milestones, Ages 1 to 3 Years

Last Updated: January 30, 2018