Speech and Language Development Stages: Between 4 and 5 Years Old

Speech and Language Milestones

  • Has sentence length of 4-6 words
  • Continues to learn lots of new words very quickly
  • Points to colors red, blue, yellow and green
  • Identifies triangles, circles and squares
  • Understands “In the morning”, “next”, “noontime”
  • Can speak of imaginary conditions such as “I hope”
  • Asks many questions, asks “who?” And “why?”
  • Tells stories, recalls daily events
  • Uses past, present and future tense, mostly, but not always, correctly
  • Interested in written words, letters and numbers.
  • Matches and sorts objects in a large variety of ways
  • Understands prepositions (i.e. beside, behind, in front)
  • Stays with an activity for 11-12 minutes


Activities to encourage child speech and language development

  • Model correct sound productions
  • Repeat and expand phrases (i.e. “I have more milk” becomes “Can I have more milk, please”)
  • Model correct use of question forms (Can, do, does, is), pronoun use and verb tenses
  • Help sort objects and things (i.e. things you eat, animals, food)
  • Encourage planning activities (i.e. what should we build out of blocks)
  • Have the child deliver messages for you
  • Continue talking about interests and daily activities
  • Read longer stories
  • Encourage storytelling and pretend play activities
  • Be attentive when approached


Speech Development Warning Signs

Contact Speech Matters, LLC if your child demonstrates difficulty with:

  • Difficulty being understood by others
  • Frustration when communicating if intended message is not understood
  • Difficulty putting sentences together
  • Lots of grammatical difficulties in their sentences
  • Difficulties with concepts such as prepositions (position words such as behind, beside, etc.) colors, size, categories
  • Limited asking of questions
  • Poor following of verbal directions
  • Limited interest and knowledge of letters and numbers
  • Prefers solitary play to peer interaction
  • Limited self-vocalization during pretend play activities



Are you seeing some of the warning signs in your child’s speech and language development?

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