Every toddler is special. Similarly, every family would have its own culture and upbringing. But, the child development of toddlers presents almost the same. This page intends to help moms (you) understand toddler behavioral needs and to encourage you spending more quality time with your child to build optimum life-long relationships. Therefore, before carrying any activities with your toddler, it is better to have some good understanding of what a toddler is. This will guide you in knowing what to expect and what not to. Toddlers can be the sweetest creatures at times but also the most terrible monsters at another time. Sometimes, what they acted and did are beyond our logic and reason. Personally, I felt more under control and learn to be more tolerant after having the knowledge about child development of toddlers, I know, some of their ways are just part of their growing up.
Definitions and Characteristics of a Toddler and “His Gang” in a list
- A young child who is just beginning to walk.
- Toddler years begin from age one till 47 months (before they are turning four).
- Strange little people whose logic is unique.
- More interesting than babies as they can do many things that babies cannot do.
- Cannot express well enough in words about how they feel, may find their new-found independence exciting and frustrating at the same time.
- Known for anti-social acts with strangers and new places.
- Loud and bold in secure and familiar surroundings.
- Treat bedtime and mealtime battles as the trigger of playing the game of power control with parents.
- Not so favorite having siblings.
- Self-taught learner.
- Great with hands-on approach to discovery learning (sensory, touch, motor skills,etc).
- Want to do things for themselves: pouring, scooping, beading, tying shoes-laces, buttoning and opening and closing doors are among the many skills toddlers eager to learn.
- Play is their profession.
- Not ready for formal teaching.
- Good in imitating and play pretend.
- No wait time in their dictionary.
- Everything seems to be theirs.
Source taken mainly from Liew, R .(2007). Parenting Toddlers. Kuala Lumpur: Discern Publishing House
Child Development of Toddlers
The toddler years are a very important time, especially in the development of a child. This is because this is the time when they start uttering words, being able to do things they have never done before and start playing. That is why as parents, we should be equipped with knowledge when it comes to the child development of toddlers, which would be further discussed later on. However, you need not worry much if in case your child hasn’t reached that milestone like other children of the same age as him/her did for they develop at different pace, your child will get there finally, unless your instinct and observation tell you that something is not right, then you may seek for the pediatricians’ help.
At 12-15 months
When we consider the child development of toddlers, at 12 months, some children could be able to stand alone well. One would also be able to walk between 12-15 months. Besides, he/she would be able to say at least 2-3 words apart from “Dada” or “Mama.“ They also tend to point at the things that they need.
At 18 months
At 18 months, they would be able to walk well with their feet slightly apart and they would also be able to climb. They could also be able to say at least 6-12 words and repeat the last words of sentences. This is also the time when they would want to do things themselves and the time when their personality traits would start to show. Prefer to play alone but be close to the adults. They love using objects and need routines for comfort and security. If in case you child has been throwing tantrums, then you also need not worry much as it is normal at his/her age. This behavior will go on until they are four. Take heart, moms and accept them for the fact that it is their natural development, just that some toddlers are more “dramatic” in expressing the tantrums than the others, and my boy is definitely one of them , so dramatic that would drain all your energy away. He then learned to mellow out when he turns three.
At 2 years
Regarding child development of toddlers at 2 years, they would be able to climb up the stairs. There are also some toddlers who can walk backwards. They would also be able to stand and squat without the use of their hands apart from them being able to kick a ball. So, you may consider to potty train your child at this time when you know that they are ready. The toddler at this age should be able to say 50 or more recognizable words.They like to play stacking, peek-a-boo plus cause-and-effect activities such as throwing a thing and the sound of the object falling on the ground is heard. A child of this age also wants to be more independent, thus “NO!” could be their favorite word choice. The “terrible two” war has just started to get worst: The conflict of power control and independence will be sparked off. However, they still want their parents’ approval and favor, tend to get the attention of their parents often. This is also the time when their imagination starts to develop and so you can consider exposing them to the quiet activity book for toddler and playing pretend.
At 3 years
Children of 3 years of age, they would be able to name pictures and call a friend by name. They can also trace and draw lines, circles, color,etc. Probably you both will enjoy coloring together with your adult coloring pages. Apart from being able to balance on one foot, they would also be able to walk on tiptoes. If you have an idea on child development of toddlers, you would know that this is the time when they are curious about a lot of things and so, they tend to ask many questions. “What and why” will be thrown at you all the time, and they may ask the same question repeatedly, be patient dear moms, it shows that your toddler is actually thinking- the brain cells are connecting well! Besides, they would also want to hear stories, so you can consider telling them stories before they go to bed. You can even introduce them a well-proven toddler reading program to make sure they have a good start ahead.
You and your husband should also know that you both could help a lot in the child development of toddlers, especially us, moms. This is because we are the ones who often interact with them. Therefore, we could consider playing with our easy fun toddler activities that offers them opportunities to learn. In addition, we shall always be by our children’s side to provide them support in the different areas of their development. Above all, communication is the key, as they tend to listen to whatever others, especially what the parents say.
Three recommended books to help you with developmental activities: