Close
Language?
English
Español
Communication disorders

Receptive Language Issues: What You’re Seeing

By Peg Rosen

97Found this helpful

Does your child tune out during conversations? Does he respond inappropriately? Kids with receptive language issues have trouble making sense of spoken or written language. Learn more about what you might be seeing.

97Found this helpful
Receptive Language Issues: What You’re Seeing

Kids with receptive language issues hear and read words just fine. But they can have trouble understanding the meaning of language. Here are some signs to look out for.

Seems consistently uninterested when people are speaking.
At home: When other people talk or share stories, your child rarely asks questions or makes comments. Or he may interrupt when others are talking.
At school: No matter how short or interesting a lesson may be, your child doesn’t seem to be listening.
The issue: Kids with receptive language issues may tune out and withdraw because what they hear has little meaning to them. They don’t know how to respond.

Has difficulty following directions.
At home: Your child nods when you ask him to do things. But he consistently seems to “blow off” your requests. Or he performs only half the task.
At school: The teacher says your child can only follow directions if they’re broken into small steps. He may also wait to act until he can copy what other kids are doing.
The issue: Kids with receptive language issues can have trouble following directions. Spoken instructions are particularly tough because they’re often given quickly.

Consistently misunderstands what is asked, said or written.
At home: You ask, “How are you doing,” but your child responds with what he’s doing: “I’m looking for my baseball glove.” Or he may ask you to repeat the question.
At school: When the teacher asks a question at story time, your child’s answers are o base. For example, if the teacher asks, “Where was Little Red Riding Hood going?” your child might say, “She has treats in that basket.”
The issue: Kids with receptive language issues can often grasp details. But they may struggle to connect words and ideas for greater meaning.
Graphic of Receptive Language Issues: What You're Seeing
Graphic of Receptive Language Issues: What You're Seeing

What’s Next

About the Author

Portrait of Peg Rosen

Peg Rosen

Peg Rosen has written for numerous digital and print outlets, including ParentCenter, WebMD, Parents, Good Housekeeping, More, Fitness and Martha Stewart.

More by this author

Reviewed by Kelli Johnson, M.A. Oct 24, 2014 Oct 24, 2014

Did you find this helpful?

Comments

What’s New on Understood

facebook
twitter
pinterest
googleplus
email