What are the skills you should expect from your toddler? Read on to see what milestones to watch out for.
In this article:
- When Is My Child Considered a Toddler?
- What Should I Expect from My Toddler?
- Why Should I Keep Track of My Toddler’s Milestones?
- What Should I Do if I Notice Significant Delays in My Toddler’s Development? When Should I Seek Help?
- How Do I Support My Child Better at This Stage?
Toddler Milestones | What to Expect at This Stage
When Is My Child Considered a Toddler?
Toddlers are children aged 12 to 36 months or one to three years old. It’s at this stage when the child will develop his/her cognitive and motor skills. Physical growth and development may slow down a bit at the age of two to four years old, but you will notice a lot of changes in your child in various aspects.
The toddler stage is a special time for both parents and kids. It’s a time when your once little baby, who was so dependent on you, starts to explore the world on his or her own. The support he/she gets at this stage will play a huge role in his/her skills and personality as he/she grows up.
What Should I Expect from My Toddler?
- 13-18 Months
There will be noticeable motor skills development during these months. Your toddler will begin to squat to pick up his/her toys. This will also be the time he starts to stand up on his/her own and learn how to walk. As the months progress, your child will need less support in standing up, will be able to walk independently, and seldom fall down.
He/she will start using more words and respond to your questions. He/she will probably know around 5-10 words by now and even learn gestures. You should also start to be conscious of the words you use around your toddler because he/she is bound to repeat words he/she hears in conversations.
You’ll notice your toddler starts to love bath times and be more comfortable with your hugs and cuddles. He/she will also enjoy interacting with people more at this point and appreciate simple games, such as peek-a-boo and patty cake. You will also notice that he/she is able to maintain eye contact when interacting with people.
- 19-24 Months
Your child at this point will be able to know and use at least 50 words and use them in phrases. He/she should be able to name objects when you point them or show them a picture. Naming body parts should also be easy for him/her at this point.
This is a good time to read to your little one a bedtime story every night as he/she will enjoy hearing stories and be able to understand new words more quickly. It’s also a good time to take him/her to the park as he/she will enjoy playing with other kids and playing with the swings and slides. If it’s time to go home, you can call your child by his/her name, and he/she will be able to look back upon hearing his/her name.
- 2-3 Years Old
They call the age of two as ‘terrible two’ because you will see your toddler running around all the time and is almost always up to something. It’s because, at this stage in toddler development, the child loves to explore and figure things out on his/her own by observing and tinkering.
You will notice your child becoming more curious. Usually, at this toddler age, it’s as if the questions never stop coming. He/she will keep asking ‘what’, ‘why,’ and ‘how.’ He understands the concept of what is his/hers and what is yours.
This is a stage when it’s advisable to take him/her to places where he/she can interact with kids his/her age. He/she will be able to participate in small group activities and will show genuine interest in other people.
Why Should I Keep Track of My Toddler’s Milestones?
Developmental milestones matter since they are signs of a normal and healthy development. If the child does not reach a certain milestone at an age he/she is expected to, it can be a sign of a problem.
Problems at this stage can point to sensory issues such as problems with hearing or sight. Close observation of developmental milestones during the toddler stage can also help you pinpoint learning disabilities or neurological issues early on.
Don’t be too hard on yourself or your toddler. Children develop differently, and you shouldn’t compare your own child’s progress to another. A few weeks delay should be no problem and doesn’t immediately mean there should be a cause for alarm.
What Should I Do if I Notice Significant Delays in My Toddler’s Development? When Should I Seek Help?
As mentioned earlier, a couple of weeks delay in milestones shouldn’t be a problem. But if you notice your child is significantly behind in terms of the development expected from him/her, it may be time to ask your pediatrician for some advice.
Speech delays, difficulty in potty training, lack of social connection, and eye contact can be signs that something is wrong and it needs to be addressed. The sooner you talk to your doctor about it, the sooner an intervention can be done.
How Do I Support My Child Better at This Stage?
The toddler stage is a special time for the parent and the child. During this time, your child is a little more independent but still loves the interaction with you. As a parent, there are several things you can do to support your precious one at this stage.
First, play more games with your child. There are tons of toddler games you can play with him/her to help your child improve his/her socialization skills as well as aid in speech development, motor development, and object recognition. It will also help if you give him/her toys he can tinker around with or ride on to support his/her cognitive and motor skills.
Next, read and talk to your toddler. It might be tempting to put a phone or tablet in front of him/her to get him/her to keep quiet or distracted, but too much screen time can be harmful to your toddler’s physical and mental health. While playing a song or storytelling video on YouTube can help him/her hear new words, it won’t be helpful for his/her socialization skills and comprehension.
Toddlers usually progress in a natural, predictable sequence from one developmental milestone to the next. Watch this video from Learning ZoneXpress to know more:
Your child will only be little once so make sure to make it count. Spend as much time with your tot and give him/her your support throughout all his/her developmental years. You will be surprised at how fast time flies, and before you know it, he/she is off to school as a preschooler!
Is your child reaching these toddler milestones? Let us know in the comments section below!