There is no exact word count set in stone as to how many words a 15-month child should be able to say. Each child, as with all the development stages, will progress at their own pace. However, there is a guideline, and while we urge you not to judge your child on this guide, you can get a good idea of what to expect.

Most 15-month-old children will have about five clear words in their vocabulary. What we mean by clear is that you and others will understand what they are saying when they speak these words. Most times, “Mama” and “Dada” or variations of those will be their first words, such as “Mommy, Daddy, Da, or Ma.” The other words could be anything, dependent on what you have been repeating to your child. Most say “Ta,” i.e., for Thank You, or can say another’s name or even say ”cat” or “dog”.

How to Encourage Your Child to Say More


Reading to your child is essential, not only from small but right up until they can read themselves and beyond. Reading out loud is a great way to help your child’s language development.


Talk to your child often. This may sound like par for the course, but some parents forget to engage their babies in everything they do.


Listen to what your little one is saying. You may not think, at first, they are saying anything at all, but the garbled word they keep repeating may very well mean something. If you catch on to what it is they are saying, you can repeat the correct pronunciation of the word back over and over until they eventually say it right.


When you perform an action, no matter what it is, tell your child what you are doing. If they do something, tell them what they are doing.

Simple Simon

Stick to single words, to begin with, at least until you see they are stringing more than words together. They will do this on their own in time.

Age Appropriate Words

Up to 24 months, you can use any words with your bud. Many parents do not like to usebaby wordsand stick to the actual words. An example would be using ‘baba’ instead of ‘baby’. Some substitute a word for a real food item, like ‘nana’ for ‘banana’.

Stats show that eventually, the child will use the correct word and leave behind the baby word, so we are not concerned if you use ‘baby type’ word.

If you find your little guy still using ‘baby words’ close to 5 years old, you can start bringing the ‘real word’, in a subtle manner. Sometimes they hold onto words as a way to stay close to their parents or when they realize that baby talk gets them attention. So, don’t stress about how many words your 15-month-old says. They will catch up in their own good time!

About the Author

Lisa Bell

Freelance Creative Writer and Author For the last 8 years I was very busy with my insurance brokerage which I have recently sold. I now have the time to explore my creative writing passion. With my many years of experience in the corporate world and having self-published my first novel, The Shifters, available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and via my website, I feel I have the talent to express myself on all types of topics. I have experience in writing a number of articles recently and looking forward to spreading my wings to explore different angles of creative writing. Author of The Shifters SEO Proficient Writer and Researcher Qualified Fitness Consultant - able to write on topics related to fitness, health and nutrition.

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