6 Years

At age six years, your child should:

  • Use adult-like grammar in sentences and conversations
  • Understand the meanings of most sentences
  • Name the days of the week in order and count to 30
  • Predict the next sequence of events and tell a four- to five-part story
  • Tell month and date of birth
  • Know the meaning of "through," "away," "toward" and "from"
  • Ask lots of "why, what and how" questions
  • Understand 20,000 to 26,000 words
  • Understand time intervals and seasons of the year
  • Be aware of mistakes in other people's speech
  • Use comparative and superlative forms ( -er, -est)
  • Use irregular plurals

At age six, your child may:

  • Answer complex questions relating to an orally presented paragraph or story
  • Solve simple problems when given a situation
  • Verbally sequence the events in a story
  • Be able to tell time to the quarter hour

You can stimulate the speech and language developement of your six-year-old by:

  • Spending quiet time each day when just the two of you can carry on a conversation
  • Having your child read books to you and reading more advanced books to him or her
  • Having your child run errands for you that involve remembering a list of instructions
  • Having your child retell stories or events
  • Defining new words and concepts to your child
  • Encouraging your child to use language to express his or her feelings, ideas, dreams, wishes and fears

Some specific activities are:

  • Helping your child write and decorate his own story-picture book.
  • Allowing your child to cook using a cookbook with simple instructions (for example, making Kool-Aid)
  • Playing games with your child that involve reasoning and conversation (for example "Guess Who?" or "Guess What I'm Describing")
  • Encouraging your child to tell you about his or her day at school
  • Allowing your child to contribute to family discussions that involve decision-making (for example, he or she could help decide what restaurant the family will go to for supper)

If you are concerned that your child may not be developing these skills as he or she should, you may seek the advice of a speech-language pathologist.