Speech can be very slow to develop in kids with Down syndrome. Anthony's a great communicator with his signs and other non-verbal ways, but spoken words are still tough for him.
A couple of months ago, his Early Intervention teacher, Emily, gave us a tip that I think has done more for getting him to use words than years of speech therapy. To encourage him to speak, Emily suggested that we point to our mouth as we say a word to give him a visual prompt as he hears it. Such a simple thing, but it's worked amazingly well. He'll pretty much try to say any word now when you point to your mouth and say it. He's also using words on his own more and more. It's cute because he puts his own finger by his mouth as he says a word.
Emily came to visit Anthony at school yesterday and sent us this video in which she encourages him to say "Pour in" at the bean bucket. As she puts it she's "working with him on two-word requests." (And you thought they were just pouring beans into a bucket) Notice she first says the words out loud as she points to her mouth, and then she points to her mouth but doesn't say anything, to encourage him to say the word on his own. Small steps, but we know he'll get there!