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How well should a 3 year old talk?

My 3.5 year old son has a very large vocabulary, for example, if you ask him at meal time if he want's more food he will respond "No thank you, I've had enough.", but he doesn't seem to pronounce his words clearly. He just kind of slurs them together, especially if he is excited, is this normal for this age? I'm not the kind of person to rush my child in to the doc or therapist, so I just want second opinions.

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Asked by Panditacjp at 5:58 PM on Feb. 28, 2009 in Preschoolers (3-4)

Level 1 (3 Credits)
Answers (8)
  • Here's a nice article on language development in 3 and 4 year olds...


    Answer by kaycee14 at 6:06 PM on Feb. 28, 2009

  • three is young. there is a lot of development needed for the mouth to be able to fully enunciate each sound properly.

    and all 3 yr olds are different. I one that was talking like Einstien at 3 and one that didn't talk until he was 4 (and one that was more 'normal'). They all talk just fine now.

    Answer by Kiter at 6:15 PM on Feb. 28, 2009

  • My 3 year old is in speech therapy for articulation. His vocabulary is much beyond his age, but his articulation...well, it sucks. About 85% of what they say should be understood by everyone.


    Answer by TiccledBlue at 7:34 PM on Feb. 28, 2009

  • I have 4 year old twin boys. At 3 I was concerned they talked but it was difficult to understand their words. I took my twins to be seen by a speech pathologist. Both boys have been in speech for a year now speaking well.   Best thing is it's a free program!!


    Answer by mommiedear at 12:02 PM on Mar. 1, 2009

  • Best explained this way. Certain sounds are obtained by certain ages. Some sounds that are older sounds will not be acquired by a 3 year old. Other sounds will be earlier sounds. Not only do you look at which sounds are in error, but also what is your sone doing with the sounds. Is he leaving the ending sound off of words? Does he substitute one sound in place of another( t/k , says tat for cat) A three year old should have the following sounds. "p", "b", "m", "f", "d". A letter like "l" may not be obtained until age 7 and this is ok.

    Answer by LovetoTeach247 at 12:31 AM on Mar. 2, 2009

  • At that age most people should be able to understand most of what he says. If he is saying complete sentences and answering questions with full statements and reason; he is doing well. Try only to correct if neccessary. His speech will clear up about school age.

    Answer by vsrillo at 5:05 PM on Mar. 2, 2009

  • Speech delay is the most common and the most easiest to get them into preschool with. My daughter talked late and had a speech therapist for 5 months in our early intervention program. Shes now 3 years old and everyone thinks she speaks very very well for her age, if not above and beyond the normal. There is a few sounds we are working with/articulation but overall shes a fabulous talker and talks alot!

    Answer by ladysylpher at 5:15 PM on Mar. 2, 2009

  • I ask the same question all the time, only because my daughter speaks very well.. and clearly, she has been since b4 she was 2... I hav 2 keep in mind that she kinda spoke realli early n not every1 will. but i think by now (shez 3 1/4) she should be able to get her point across 2 jus about any1, and she can. but most of the kids in her class (all older) dont spek half as well as she can. i dnt kno if i expcet more of the children because im used to her or if they should actually be doing better thn they are. we all kno kids are so different, but at 3 i would b more concerned if he couldnt put sentences 2gether over pronounciation... i agree, try 2 correct him, make him repeat n most of all dont allow ppl to him using baby talk ( that cant be helpful) GL

    Answer by StarrCooKie at 10:46 AM on Mar. 4, 2009

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