24 Months

Does your 2 year old...
  • follow two-step directions – “Go find your teddy bear and show it to Grandma”?
  • use 100 or more words?
  • use at least two pronouns – “you”, “me”, “mine”?
  • consistently combine two or more words in short phrases – “daddy hat”, “truck go down”?
  • enjoy being with other children?
  • offer toys to peers and imitates other children’s actions and words?
  • talk in a way that people can understand their words 50 to 60 percent of the time?
  • form words and sounds easily and effortlessly?
  • hold books the right way up and turn pages?
  • “read” to stuffed animals or toys?
  • scribble with crayons?
If your child does not do one or several of the above, First Words can help!  Complete the Communication Checkup or contact Ottawa Public Health at 613-580-6744 or 613-PARENTS for more information. Also look out for any of these red flags:
  • Limited shared interest in others
  • Lack of response to their name
  • Difficulty with gestures such as showing and pointing
  • Difficulty following an adult’s point
  • Does not initiate communication
  • Limited production of sounds
  • Uses more gestures than words to communicate
  • Doesn’t seem to understand when you talk to them
  • Finds it hard to point to simple pictures or follow simple directions
  • Repetitive play or movement behaviours
  • Any loss of any social and/or language skills
If you have noticed any of these red flags, your child may be dealing with a developmental issue as well as a language delay and will need more support.  An immediate referral to the Ottawa Children’s Treatment Centre (OCTC) for a developmental assessment might be required. Contact OCTC at 613-737-0871.  

Here are a few quick strategies to help your 2 year old learn to communicate:

  • Expand on what your child says by repeating the message back and adding words to complete the thought or add a new idea.
  • Involve your child in helping out around the house.  Toddlers love simple household tasks:  wiping the table, sorting the laundry, tidying up the toys.
  • Leave books out for your child to look at, both on their own and with you.
  • Sing songs about everyday routines:  handwashing, tooth brushing, tidying up.
  • Play with your toddler in lots of different ways by using puzzles, blocks, sand and play dough.  Visit toy lending libraries and garage sales for ideas.
  • Go to playgroups, drop-ins or the park so that your child can play with other children.
  • Check out our “Strategies” and “Learning Tools” sections for other strategies and resources!