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Common First Words and How To Use Them

Speech and Language Staff
January 2, 2019

Is your child a late talker? Does he or she not use a lot of words? By focusing on using common first words in your every day routines, you can increase your child’s exposure to these words see if he or she will start imitating these words as well.


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Incorporate some of these activities paired with using the targeted word during daily routines and play time.

All gone: Say “all gone” after eating, playing with blocks, putting away toys.

More: Say more whenever you have two of something (food, socks, books, laundry, grass) and when anticipating more of something. Withhold additional snack items and model “more” before giving more.

Bye-bye: Wave bye-bye to everyone and every animal you see, It even works with toys.

Open: Say the word “open” and model the sign for “open” when opening books, doors, the fridge, tops to toys and other objects.

Eat: Say “eat” before each bite while you eat a meal and to describe what your child is doing during a meal.

Go: Make anything go such as cars, running the park, balls, blocks, animals, and start with, “Ready….Set….GO!!!”

Book: Point to books, prepare to read books, hide books, and put books away in a bookcase while repeating the word, “book.”

Baby: Look at pictures in books of babies, play with baby dolls, and point out babies you see.

Car: Move cars around the floor, make them go down ramps, and push cars over books.

Cookie: Say “cookie” while eating cookies, put cookies in a jar, count cookies, pretend to feed a doll a cookie.

Uh – oh: Say “uh-oh” as you drop toys, knock over blocks, or when something falls.

Shoe: Point to shoes, put shoes on, put shoes on dolls, put toys in shoes, all while saying the word “shoes.”

Milk: Say “milk” while drinking, give pretend milk to stuffed animals, point to milk in fridge.

Shhh: Put animals, teddy bears, or dolls to sleep by covering them with a blanket and saying “shhh.”

Ball: Bounce balls, roll balls, throw balls – say “ball” before every turn.

Are you concerned about your child’s language development? Contact us to set up an appointment with one of our speech-language pathologists.

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