Expressive Language

Expressive language is the use of words, sentences, gestures and writing to
convey meaning and messages to others. Expressive language skills include being able to label objects in the environment, describe actions and events, put words together in sentences, retell a story, and ask or answer questions .


Why is expressive language important?
Expressive language is important because it enables individuals to
express their wants and needs, thoughts and ideas, argue a point of view, and self advocate.

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What are the building blocks necessary to develop expressive language?
From the moment we are born we begin learning the building blocks to develop expressive language. It doesn't happen overnight and we learn these from our parents, caregivers, and the world around us. These building blocks are: 

  • Receptive language - understanding what is said to us

  • Attention and concentration - being able to keep your focus long enough to finish a task

  • Pre-language skills - how we communicate without using words (ex. gestures, facial expressions, imitation, and joint attention)

  • Play skills - participating in self motivated activities for enjoyment

  • Pragmatics: The way language is used within social situations.

  • Intrinsic communication motivation - wanting to communicate with others.

  • Fine motor skills in order to be able to develop alternative forms of
    expressive language, such as signing, if verbal language is not developing.


    How can you tell if my child has problems with expressive language (using words and language)?  If a child has difficulties with expressive language they might:

  • Have difficulty naming items and objects.

  • Not link together words or uses sentences that are shorter than others of the same age.

  • Use sentences that sound immature for their age.

  • Use ‘jargon’ (made up words) in speech.

  • Produce sentences that are ‘muddled’ (i.e. words in wrong order, lots of stops and starts, a lack of flow).

  • Not be understood by unfamiliar people.

  • Have difficulty finding the right words to use in conversation or when describing or explaining something.

  • Have trouble retelling a story.

If  you suspect your child has a Language Disorder contact us to do a comprehensive language assessment. In language therapy it is my philosophy to build on strengths to improve weaknesses. Using your child's strengths to target areas of need give them a sense of success and pride while working on language skills. Improved language skills can lead to improved interactions, increased progress in academics, and boosted self esteem. 

Contact Information

Located in Thatcher Place:

309 Goode St. 

Suite 2E-1

Houma, LA 

Telephone: 985-205-3531

Email: info@lookwhostalkingslp.org

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