My 2 year old child loves reciting the alphabet on her own. Her mother and I take turns to recite the alphabet one by one with her. However, we noticed that when she reaches I she says Y and then Z. And also the other way round!

Sometimes she has also got confused between H and A.

We thought she'd learn the correct ones with time, but it has been over 3 months now.

Any suggestions for improvement?

  • 2
    Don't worry about it. She's still young. Just keep reciting it with her. She'll figure it out. I would avoid any attempt to correct her. Just say it correctly yourself. May 24 '16 at 14:28

User1751825 gave what I think is the correct answer: Don't worry about it.

At 2 years old, most children can say sentences with 2 to 4 words, and may have a vocabulary of only 50 words. A long list of alphabet letters is still a very abstract concept, and it is totally okay if they aren't getting all the letters, or aren't saying them in the right order.

Relax and enjoy this time. Don't spend it worrying what this might mean for their future development. It's adorable. Make sure you get a video of it so you can watch back on it someday and laugh.

Finally, I think user1751825 also hit the nail on the head with the advice: just model correct behavior. Don't correct the language at this point. A dear friend of mine grew up always being corrected, and it made her shy and not want to say anything until she was sure she was right, and wasn't going to get corrected. That's no way to raise a child.

Man I wish I had more videos of my kids at that age making those adorable language "mistakes." :)

  • 1
    Yes, I agree with you. We tend to crazy on these silly mistakes and not enjoy them wholeheartedly.
    – Vivek Todi
    May 26 '16 at 9:18

What about displaying all the letters at once (teachers stereotypical have the banner of the ABC's across the top of their chalk board) and pointing at them as you sing them slowly?

EX: "G...point...H....point... I...point" so that she gets a sense for how long the alphabet is and that each part of the song is its own individual letter.

I remember when I was a child singing the ABC's taught me that LMNO was actually one word "I..J..K...ellemno...P" It took me beginning to associate the song with the individual letters to cure it.


Its one of those things that fixes itself, plus 2 year old seems very precocious in this respect!

However, what I think works to get rid of any imprecision in speech or writing is to show that you don't understand. If they are trying to communicate something and you don't understand it, they will get, at the deepest possible level, that they are doing it wrong and not producing the result they expect.

  • I honestly wouldn't pretend to not understand in this case. I submit that this isn't worth correcting. It will correct on its own, and this isn't a situation where you need to stand your ground or be critical. Kids intuitively know when you are "not understanding" because you want them to learn a concept and when you are really not understanding them. Support and model correct language usage at this age, but don't try to fix mistakes. It's not how kids learn language anyway (which studies show is actually through analogical modeling (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Analogical_modeling) May 25 '16 at 22:09

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