A mother and toddler sit on the floor laughing and hugging as they listen to Craftie stories on their Storypod

How to Support Your 12 Month Old’s Language Development With These Easy Phrases

Using Plenty of Positive & Growth-Focused Words, Questions, and Praise Can Help Keep Your Child’s Language Development on Track

Is your 12 month old starting to copy your speech sounds, say simple words they’ve heard like, “uh-oh” or “dada”, understand easy instructions like, “let’s go”, register words for everyday items like “shirt”, or turn to look at sounds they hear? That’s wonderful! Those are language development milestones that occur at around 12 months.

Language development is linked to the number of words an infant hears in a day. GreatSchools, an education nonprofit, explains that, “Some children hear about 21,000 words a day, others hear 6,000 or fewer. By age 3, that difference becomes a substantial word gap that predicts future success.”

Here are some easy phrases you can use to support your 12 month old’s language development:

  • Tell your child, “you are doing such a great job fill in the blank!” Some easy suggestions to fill in the blank with are: holding your blanket, eating your food, wearing your shoes, listening to me, making sounds, saying words”. When you use positive and supportive words and phrases around your child, that helps to shape their language development and worldview in a happy and healthy way.
  • Say, “hold your cup like this” and show them how you want them to hold their cup, instead of saying “don’t hold your cup like that”. When you focus on telling them what you want them to do (rather than what you don’t want them to do), you are providing them with growth focused language. This helps your child learn without feeling like they did something wrong.
  • Do lots of talking around your child. When your child hears you talking, even if it's not to them, they are learning how to interpret different tones of voice, cadence, and how words sound. When you talk to your friends, partner, and family members around your child, you are providing them with excellent exposure to new words. Playing audio books, encouraging the use of toys that talk to your child, and playing lots of songs for them are other excellent ways to strengthen your child’s language development.
A toddler laughs and plays with a Craftie as her two older siblings listen to their Storypod speaker
In photo: Tali Tucan Craftie, Storypod speaker, and interchangeable sleeve.

Storypod can support your 12 month old’s language development in the following ways:

We offer Crafties (like Sleepi Sheep and Tali Tucan) that play lullabies and songs to sooth your 12 month old while increasing the number of words they hear a day. With our iCraftie, you can record yourself reading stories to your child that use vocabulary words and supportive phrases that you want them to become familiar with. Your child can play these stories on their Storypod speaker whenever they want.

Our iCraftie also lets other family and friends (like grandparents, aunts & uncles, or godparents) record stories for your child. This helps the voices of loved ones become familiar to your child and lets them hear different people pronouncing words correctly, all while nurturing their literacy skills.

Storypod’s platform is interactive and grows with your child from birth onwards. We offer Crafties, Read-Along Audiobooks, and Trivia Cards to support your child on their learning journey. We provide content in English and en Español to help further develop the language processing centers in your child’s growing brain.

As your child grows, our Melodee Moose Craftie can help strengthen your 2 year old’s active listening skills and understanding of daily routines. Your 3 year old will love Uma Unicorn, who helps them follow simple directions while getting up to dance. Spike: The Penguin with Rainbow Hair is a great Read-Along Audiobook for your 4 year old and their developing sense of empathy. Our interactive Trivia Cards, like the First Skills Deck for Kindergarteners, help to support new content your 5 year old is learning in school with fun games and activities.

Every child learns to speak and process language at their own unique pace. If you are concerned about your child’s development, it is always recommended that you talk with your child’s doctor.


  1. From Mayo Clinic: Language development: Speech milestones for babies
  2. From the CDC: Important Milestones: Your Child By Two Years
  3. From GreatSchools: Bridge the word gap: speak 21,000 words to your preschooler daily
  4. CDC Milestone Checklist