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Baby screams when she wants something instead of talking

My 14 month old is screaming to get my attention when she wants something, instead of saying what it is she needs. I have heard her say small words so I know she knows some of the words...For example we were at a restraunt and she wanted out of the highchair and she lifted her arms and said up....Why wont she try talking? I read books to her I am teaching her animals and there sounds now she tries sometimes but other times she acts board any advice??? To helping her learn the words so she can talk and not scream?

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Asked by tinkerbellma21 at 8:02 AM on Jun. 24, 2009 in Toddlers (1-2)

Level 2 (12 Credits)
Answers (7)
  • Your TODDLER is talking if she can say small words. As for the screaming, stop responding to it. Tell her calmly that there is no screaming, and don't respond to what she wants until she lowers her tone.

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:05 AM on Jun. 24, 2009

  • Either ignore her or put her in her room or the time-out chair when she screams, just for a minute or until she stops, and don't give her what she wants. When she asks without screaming, or uses the word, then give her the item with a smile of encouragement. This will let her know that the screaming isn't going to work. To teach her to use words, when she points or says what she wants. say or repeat the word for it, and she'll get used to using the word.

    Answer by Bmat at 8:21 AM on Jun. 24, 2009

  • Dont give her attention when she screams ur only going to fuel the fire. Try doing some easy signs w/ ur child. This makes it fun so like for quiet put ur finger up to go shhhhhh my DD loves to do this. There r baby books for simple signs like all done which my DD learned & decided to do that after each activity to indicate she wanted to switch things up until she learned how to say all done. I also just play games w/ her like "whats this" & point to something to get her to say the word. We do online flash cards (just look up imagies in google & ask what they r). She'll come around to it but dont respond to her screaming & def talk things out to her like we need to be quiet so mommy can understand what ur trying to say. As for time out I'm all for that but I used to put my DD in her play pen & do some housework for only a min then she would fuss that way I didnt have to chase her getting up from a chair all the time.

    Answer by Mel30248 at 8:29 AM on Jun. 24, 2009

  • She's too young to be able to tell you with words every time she wants something. Yes, you're teaching her words, but it takes a LONG TIME for the brain to be able to capture that information while it is still developing and then to be able to use the information appropriately. She probably has the words in the head, but then she needs to still learn how to move her tongue and mouth to say words. Guess What!?! That's hard for a 14 month old, but screaming isn't. That's her way of saying, "Hey Mom! I need something but I can't Tell you what it is yet!!" Likely, screaming developed as a guaranteed way of getting your attention if other forms of communication were not working for her. That's how kids work - they find what works and stick with it. When she screams, calmly tell her to use her inside voice (do this quietly), identify her need, reflect back that you understand what she wants, and then respond accordingly.

    Answer by JPsMommy605 at 10:13 AM on Jun. 24, 2009

  • Teaching her some simple signs will give her a means to communicate if she is having trouble coming up with the words and is getting frustrated. Check online about some wonderful CD's and a websight called "Signing Times with Alex and Leah" They are wonderful and kids can watch them while they are playing and learn the signs. It makes it easy for you to learn them also.

    You asked about ways to help her learn more words. Absolutely do not respond to her screaming voice. Tell her "Use your big girl voice and mommy will listen." When she says "up" because she wants up, you respond by saying, "Oh, you want up out of your highchair, or your finished eating and you want to get up." By doing this, you are modeling for her the words and how to use them in a sentence correctly. Children learn to use language by hearing that language being used.

    Answer by LovetoTeach247 at 10:24 AM on Jun. 24, 2009

  • Also, as you drive her places in the car or do things for her at home, talk to her about what you are doing. Ex. Mommy is wiping your hands and getting them clean. Also talk to her and describe what she is doing. Ex. You are putting the blocks in the bucket. Good job!
    Lastly, if you think she is slow to learn new words, consider having her hearing checked. Reoccuring ear infections or fluid affect what she is able to hear.

    Answer by LovetoTeach247 at 10:32 AM on Jun. 24, 2009

  • Don't respond to the screams. Just calmly say "Mommy doesn't understand you when you whine or scream. Tell Mommy what you want." You will have to say it over and over, but don't give in until she responds calmly. The baby sign language videos worked great for us too. My DD could do all the sign language long before she could talk. It gave her another way to communicate.

    Answer by ThrivingMom at 10:56 AM on Jun. 24, 2009

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