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At what age do children start recognizing letters and counting?

My son is 21 months. He recognizes probably about 18-20 letters in the alphabet. He knows the other letters are letters, but he mixes them up. He can count to about 6 on his own, but it's more of a song than an actual understanding. He can physically count up to four objects though for sure. If I say "8" he will say "9, 10!"

Does that sound like he is on track, ahead of the game, or behind?

No bashing please, I'm just curious because he doesn't go to daycare so I don't have professionals to tell me if he is on track or not (he'll hopefully start a daycare soon though).

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 9:14 PM on May. 11, 2010 in General Parenting

Answers (7)
  • My LO knew all of the letters of the alphabet and what sounds they make by 20 mos. We have a few leap frog videos that I highly recommend. She is also learning how to count from those videos. I would look into getting the letter factory and math adventure to the moon. These have been phenomenal videos for my LO and she is now really advanced for her age. She has the vocabulary of a 2 1/2 to 3 year old.

    Answer by coala at 9:19 PM on May. 11, 2010

  • You are doing great. He is doing great. He is doing just fine. Don't push. He will be fine. Just sing songs. Count what he eats. But for the most part and the big thing is have fun!! Make it fun. Don't frustrate him and don't worry about where he should be. If he progresses in a month with anything, ie he can run this month where last month he was walking then he is progressing. A child may seem to fall behind on something but they are actually focusing on something else. So don't worry. They all progress differently and everyone should know that!!

    Answer by tichelle at 9:21 PM on May. 11, 2010

  • I think that is great! Make sure you do the sound with him too so C says cc
    when he's counting let him count something like fingers, youre eyes ears and nose, toes

    My ds was about 14 months but DD who was first was more like 3-- but she had no one to learn from and I was afirst time Mom-- its wiedr her struggles are his Forte-- he is 3 and can read her decodable K books sometimes with better accuracy then her-- he's not smarter he's just got her as the edge

    Answer by MELRN at 9:22 PM on May. 11, 2010

  • He is ahead. Most kids do not recognize letter or numbers until 3-4 years old. If they recognize them in order, all they did was memorize the alphabet. Mix up the letters and numbers and make sure they can recognize upper and lower case letters. It really isn't a skill most kids learn until 3-4 years old.

    Answer by tyfry7496 at 10:05 PM on May. 11, 2010

  • My daughter knew (like could point to them and say "S", "A", etc) all the letters to the alphabet around 20 months too, she knew about half of them by 18 months. She could count to 10 by the same time. I haven't pushed it at all she just really seems to like letters!

    Answer by Blueliner at 10:09 PM on May. 11, 2010

  • Oh and she knows upper and lower case out of order, so she hasn't just memorized the order.

    Answer by Blueliner at 10:11 PM on May. 11, 2010

  • WOW SOUNDS LIKE THE KID IS A HEAD OF THE GAME !!!!! MY OLDEST WAS LIKE THAT SHE KNEW ALL LETTERS AND NUMBERS BEFORE 2. HER MEMORY IS AWESOME AND STILL IS !!!! SHE IS MY OLDEST SO HAD LOTS AND LOTS OF TIME TO WORK WITH HER. As for my middle she had some trouble with recognization of letters and numbers and letter sounds but is in 2 nd grade and reading on a 4th grade level. My youngest recognized most letters after 2 and numbers after 3 and letter sounds were early. All children learn at different speeds and usually if they are your 1st child they will always be ahead of the game.

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:23 PM on May. 11, 2010

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