This page is all about 7 year old speech and language skills.  Keep in mind that these milestones are based on research about typically-developing children but this information is not meant to diagnose a speech-language delay or disorder.  There is a wide range of “normal” and even if your child is slightly delayed in a few of these areas, it doesn’t necessarily mean he or she has a speech or language delay.  Please contact a speech-language pathologist for a screening if you are concerned about your child’s speech and language skills.  All norms are taken from the  Linguisystems Guide to Communication Milestones which sites the specific resources and research articles used to find each milestone.

Speech Sound Development

By this age, your child should be able to consistently make the following sounds correctly:
-/p/, /b/, /m/, /h/, /n/, /w/, /d/, /k/, /g/, /d/, /f/, “y”, /t/, “ng”, /r/, /l/, “ch”, “sh”, “j”, voiceless “th” (like in “thumb”)

Your child’s speech should be understood by a stranger 90%-100% of the time.

Speech Sound Resource Page

Grammatical Markers

Your child should be correctly using most of the following grammatical markers:

  • Pronouns:
    – I, me, you, he, she, him, her, we, us, they, them

How to teach the pronouns “he” and “she”

  • Possessive Pronouns:
    – My, mine, your, yours, his, her, hers, our, ours, their, theirs
  • Other pronouns like:
    – myself, yourself, herself, himself, itself, ourselves, yourselves, themselves
  • “-ing” on the end of verbs

How to Teach Present Progressive “-ing”

  • Plural -s (The apples)

How to Teach Plurals

  • Possessive -s (Mommy‘s ball)

How to Teach Possessive ‘s

  • Past tense verbs (jumped, ran, etc.)

How to Teach Past Tense Verbs

Past Tense Verb Flashcards

  • Regular third person singular (he jumps, she runs)
  • Articles (the ball, a banana)

How to Teach Articles “the” and “a”

  • The conjunction “and”

How to Teach the Conjunction “And”

  • Helping verbs such as “to be”, “to do”, and “to have”, including contractions (such as “that‘s my ball”, “I’ll do that”, and “I have two”)

Your child should also be producing sentences with an average length of 4.5 words/morphemes or more.

How to Increase Sentence Length

Pragmatic Skills

Your child should be interacting with other people in most of the following ways:

  • Uses threats and promises
  • Asks for the meanings of words
  • Likes to complete projects
  • Makes purchases at store (with adult supervision)
  • Asks questions for information
  • Chooses own friends
  • Takes more care in communicating with unfamiliar people
  • Engages in cooperative play, such as making group decisions, assigning roles, and playing fairly
  • Announces topic shifts

Social Skills Resource Page

Literacy/Book Skills

Your child should be using books in most of the following ways:

  • Identifies an increasing number of words by sight
  • Begins to decode new words independently
  • Uses a variety of reading strategies such as rereading, predicting what will happen next, asking questions, or using visual cues or pictures
  • Reads and retells familiar stories
  • Reads aloud with ease
  • Decides independently to use reading and writing for different purposes
  • Sounds out and represents major sounds in words when trying to spell
  • Tries to use some punctuation and capitalization

Literacy Resource Page

Concept Development

Your child should have an understanding of most of the following concepts:

  • Understands comparative and superlative adjectives, such as “big”, “bigger”, and “biggest”
  • Understands time concepts yesterday, today, tomorrow, first, then, next, days of the week, last week, next week
  • Understands different, nearest, through, thin, whole
  • Identifies positional concepts first, middle, last

Sequencing Game

  • Understands opposite concepts, such as big/little, over/under

Opposites Game

  • Understands left/right
  • Understands number concepts up to 20
  • Answers “How are things different/same?”
  • Uses adjectives for describing

How to Teach Adjectives

Adjectives Game

  • Uses comparative adjectives such as loud, louder
  • Uses yesterday and tomorrow
  • Uses adverb concepts of backward and forward
  • Uses prepositions through, nearest, corner, middle

How to Teach Spatial Concepts

Spatial Concepts Game

  • Names ordinal numbers, such as first, second, third

Vocabulary Resource Page 

Questions

Your child should be able to use questions in most of the following ways:

  • Answers a variety of questions, including “yes/no”, “what”, “who”, “where”,  “why”, “how”, “when”, and “how many” (as long as there are only a few things)
  • Asks “what”, “where”, “when”, “how”, “whose” and one-word “why” questions
  • Asks “is” questions (like “what is this?” and “is she crying?”)

Questions Resource Page

Listening Skills

Your child should be doing most of the following listening skills:

  • Repeats sentences up to nine words in length
  • Follows three-step directions

How to Help a Child Learn to Follow Directions

  • Responds correctly to more types of sentences but still may be confused at times by more complex sentences

More Information

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