Parents often ask me, “Is it normal for my 3 year-old to have difficulty with his /s/ sound?” Or more commonly, “Is it typical for my 7 year-old to still have trouble with her /r/ sound?”
Here is a list of the most common sound errors that I come across and around what age they should be mastered. Remember that letters in / / should be noted as sounds, not letters and there are many more sounds that children have difficulty with. These are only the most common in my practice.
/g/ (as in glad) and /k/ should be mastered by age 3 years
/s/, /z/, /j/ (pronounced y as in yes) and /l/ should be mastered by age 5 years
/r/ should be mastered by age 6 years
If your child hasn’t mastered these sounds by the expected age, it may be time to consider approaching your school speech-language pathologist or a private speech-language pathologist. The earlier you can get your child in to address the sounds they are having difficulty with, the easier it will be for them to master the sound.