My 17-month-old knows quite a few words but still asks for things by pointing and grunting. If we can't tell what she is asking for, she'll start getting frustrated and shrieking. How do we encourage her to "use her words"?
Kids continue to use simple forms of communication because it feels safe. I would try, for example if she is pointing at a toy, hand it to her and " you would like the toy?" if this is not what she wants say "I would love to help you but I don't know what you want." "Can you tell me with your words?" if she doesn't try it that time I would go back to what you where doing. When she gets upset ask her periodically if she knows what she wants. Remind her that you want to help her and you will if she will tell you what she wants.
I think that when the kids know how to ask for what they want it's wrong from us to play their game, we can remind them that they know now the words and encourage them that act as a big kid . Of course when they having a tantrum they won't listen and we may not try to make them understand at that time.
If she is getting frustrated she may not know the words to ask. It is helpful to suggest words or phrases and help them. She is still learning quite a bit by that age and may not be sure of what or how to say things.
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