Development & Behavior

What should my toddler be doing right now?

Your child may be learning as many as ten new words a day now. Here are some of the language skills you can expect from your child by around age 2:

  • Forms two- to four-word sentences (“Bird fly high.”);
  • Sings simple songs;
  • Follows simple instructions;
  • Uses pronouns, though not always correctly (“Me do it” instead of “I do it”);
  • Repeats words heard in conversations;
  • Recognizes names of people, things, and parts of the body;

If it seems like your little one’s growth has slowed down, dramatically compared with his first year. The average child triples his birth weight by age 1, but only gains 1.4kg to 2.2 pounds in the second year. By now, your toddler also looks much less like a baby. He is upright, mobile, active, and his baby fat is melting away.

The way he holds his body and moves around has changed, too. The back-and-forth gait of a young toddler has evolved into a smoother, more coordinated stride. By their second birthday, most kids can pull toys behind them and carry things while they walk, and they will begin to run. Increasingly, your toddler will be able to get into places you never dreamed possible. He may climb onto stools, tables, and counters; open containers he never showed an interest in before; and move into dangerous zones (a pool, a water bucket) faster than you’d think.

What should my toddler be preparing to do?

To encourage your child to speak and use more words, you can help support by doing the following:

  • Read a variety of books. A variety of books will help your child develop more words.
  • Turn your child’s words or phrases into sentences. This means when your child says “more milk,” you can say “you want more milk in your cup.”
  • When you read together, you can help stimulate your child’s development by asking him questions about the book. You can point to pictures in the book and ask him to tell you what the object is.
  • When you take walks or drive in a care, you can point to random objects and explain to your child what that object is.

It is important to have a constant conversation with your child, even if it may seem one-sided at times.

Doctor visits

What should happen to my toddler when I visit my doctor?

Every child develops at a different rate. You should only be worried if there are any sudden changes in your child’s behavior, eating habits or sleep habits. It is important to discuss these concerns with your doctor, even when you think it may be a small concern.

What should I tell my doctor?

You may notice that your child may have separation anxiety. These episodes may come and go. You should know that this is normal. There are some triggers that can cause your little one to be anxious. These may include a new nanny, a new sibling or the thought that you are doing something fun without him. The best way to handle this is to say bye gently. You should not leave without saying bye. This will only make the situation worse. By not saying bye will make your child feel abandoned. Don’t worry. Your child will outgrow this separation anxiety. If you don’t see any improvements, you should let your doctor know. He may help you identify the triggers.

What to expect

What health concerns should I expect?

You may be concerned about your child acting out in public, especially, when you are at the supermarket, on an airplane, or in a restaurant. Your child’s temper tantrums are unpredictable. Sometimes you may feel like you don’t have control, but this is normal. You need to explain to your child firmly that their behavior is not appropriate that may not sink in the first few times but they will eventually understand they need to clean up their act.

Being tired or hungry may trigger temper tantrums. If this is true for your child, it is best to take measures to prevent tantrums in public. You can keep snacks in your purse and make sure your child does not miss his afternoon nap.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Review Date: January 4, 2017 | Last Modified: January 4, 2017

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