Toddlers are tricky
they've grown enough to have their own ideas and wants, but their bodies and emotions haven't kept pace
These few toddler developmental milestones are just some of many changes your child will go through between the age of one and three years old. Just keep in mind that every child is different, so if your toddler is a couple of months early or a couple of months behind this general guideline, don’t panic. Just try to relax and enjoy all the special moments!
- Sipping drinks through straw
- Using baby fork and spoon
- First molars and canine (cuspids) appearing
- Combining 2 or more words
- walking, running and climbing
- kick a ball and jump off the floor
- scribbling and self-feeding with a spoon
- sleeping pattern changes
- play make-believe
- start sharing toys and food
- Interaction and awareness of others
- washing and drying hands, using a tissue to wipe their nose, dressing and undressing themselves and paying attention to safety instructions
Your little one is well on the road to independence. At the table, he imitates everyone and is learning to use a baby fork and spoon as well as a sippy cup. He is very skilled at picking things up with his forefinger and thumb by now.
to make your life a bit easier
By 24 months, your baby’s first molars and canine (cuspids) may appear and after 24 months you will probably see his final four molars. Teach your baby how to take care of his teeth with his own training toothbrush. You will have to help him brush properly for a few more years.
Learning how to talk is a huge toddler milestone, and you’ll be amazed by how quickly your child’s communication skills develop. By 15-18 months your toddler should start using a few real words, and between 18 and 24 months most children progress to simple two-word phrases. Soon after that short sentences will start forming, and by the age of three, 5-6 word sentences should be part of most toddlers’ communication skills.
By now your child will also ask a lot of what-questions and know his or her own name, sex and age. A general guideline is a vocabulary of about 10 single words by 18 months, 20 single words by 21 months and 50-100 words by 24 months.
If you have heard no words by 18 months, or if speech is unclear or there is no understanding or interest in language, contact your pediatrician just to be on the safe side. Also keep in mind that up until the age of three children understand a lot more than they can say, so remember to talk lots about everything that’s happening and know that your toddler will pick up most of it. Treating your child as a talker and listening carefully to everything he or she says is also important, as this encourages them to learn.
Potty training is another huge toddler milestone which will take place any time from 18 to 36 months old. Every child is different, but you should be able to tell when your little one is ready. He or she will start showing interest in a potty and in normal underwear, while at the same time start feeling uncomfortable in dirty nappies – wanting them to be changed more often. Try to avoid intense potty training during a stressful time, such as moving house or having relatives staying for a long period of time, and don’t push your child or punish accidents and mistakes. Show praise and encouragement when he or she is doing well, and you’ll find that your toddler will be out of nappies in no time.