Language is made up of a student’s ability to understand word relationships, sentences and stories (that is, a student’s receptive language skills), and to express thoughts and ideas in logical, grammatically-correct sentences (that is, a student’s expressive language skills).

Receptive Language (Comprehension)

  • Understanding questions
  • Following instructions
  • Understanding concepts (big/little, in/on)
  • Understanding inhibitory words (no, stop, wait)
  • Understanding indirect requests and sarcastic comments
  • Following stories as a whole, drawing conclusions, making predictions
  • Understanding that the meaning of a word can change depending on the context


Expressive Language (Expression)

  • Using single words spontaneously
  • Requesting for objects and actions
  • Using Grammar
  • Saying long, complex sentences (using words such as 'because', 'so', 'but' and 'although')
  • Giving clear instructions
  • Telling stories that include all the important details in a logical order
  • Using clear, precise language to express him/her self
  • Asking questions

Pragmatics (Social Language)

  • Using and understanding gesture
  • Following the rules of conversation (e.g. taking turns, staying on topic, indicating he/she does not understand)
  • Interpreting and using appropriate tone of voice, body language, facial expression and gestures
  • Understanding that other people have different points of view
  • Using appropriate language to show an interest in others


To check if your child may have language difficulties select the age appropriate checklist below;

Infant Language Checklist

Preschool Language Checklist 

Primary School Language Checklist 

High School Language Checklist

Contact us for more information on how we can help your child with language difficulties.