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Toddler: Wikis


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Boy toddler

A toddler is a young child who is of the age of learning to walk,[1] between infancy and childhood. Toddling usually begins between the ages of 12 and 18 months.[2] During the toddler stage, the child also learns a great deal about social roles, develops motor skills, and first starts to use language.


Toddler (1-3 years old)


Physiologic changes

  • Abdominal breathing, respiratory rate slows
  • Heart rate slows further 110-90 per minute
  • Blood pressure increases 99/64 mmHg
  • Brain develops to 90% of its adult size
  • Middle ear infections still common
  • Stomach secretions become more acidic
  • Urinary and anal sphincter control becomes possible with complete myelination of the spinal cord
  • In immune system, IgG and EgM Ab product becomes mature at 2 years of age

Toddler profile

  • Gains weight only about 5 lbs. appetite decreases accordingly

2 years

  • Doubles birth height
  • Chest circumference greater than HC
  • New teeth

1/2-3 years

  • All 20 deciduous teeth are generally present
  • Subcutaneous tissue or baby fat begins to disappear as child changes from a plump baby to a leaner, more muscular child.

Body Contour

  • Tends to have prominent abdomen since his abdominal muscle are not yet strong to support abdominal contents.
  • Has lordosis because he is a beginning walker. As he walks longer, this will correct itself naturally.

Developmental milestones

Physical development

18 months

  • Growth has decreased and appetite lessened - "physiologic anorexia"
  • Anterior fontanel usually closed
  • Circumference protrudes, larger than chest circumference

2 years

  • Weight: about 11-13 kg
  • Height: about 80-82 cm
  • Teeth: 12 temporary

2 1/2 years

  • Teeth: full set of 20 temporary
  • Decreased need for nap

Motor development

14 months

  • Walks well alone with wide based gait
  • Creeps upstairs
  • Builds of two blocks
  • Drinks from a cup, uses spoon
  • Enjoys throwing objects picking them up

18 months

  • Walks sideways and backwards, runs well, falls easily
  • Climbs stairs or up on furnitures
  • Scribbles vigorously, attempting a straight line
  • Drinks well from a cup, still spills with a spoon

2 years

  • Gross motor skills quite well refined, can walk up and down stairs on both feet, one step at a time while holding on to a rail
  • Builds tower of five cubes
  • Control of spoon well-developed
  • Toilet trained during day time..

Vocalization and socialization

15 months

  • Can use 10-15 words
  • Says "no" which is said while doing a request demand
  • Indicates when diaper is wet

18 months

  • Uses phrases composed of adjectives and nouns
  • Begins to have temper tantrums
  • Very ritualistic, has favorite toy or blanket, thumb-sucking may be at peak

2 years

  • Vocabulary of about 350 words
  • Obey simple commands
  • Helps undress self and pull on simple clothes
  • Shows sign of increased autonomy and individuality
  • Does not share possessions, everything "mine"

2 1/2 years

  • Begins to see self as separate individual; still sees other children as "objects"

Major learning events

Toilet training

  1. Psychologic readiness
  2. Process training
  3. Parental response

Play (Parallel play)

  • Child plays alongside other children but not with them
  • Mostly free and spontaneous, no rules or regulations
  • Attention span very short and change of toys occur at frequent intervals
  • Imitation and make-believe play begins by end of the second year

Games: throwing and retrieving objects

Suggested toys:

  • Play furniture, dishes, cooking utensils, play telephone, puzzles with large pieces, pedal propelled toys, rocking horse, clay crayons, finger paints, pounding toys, blocks, push-pull toys, balls


To toddle is to walk unsteadily; the term cruising is sometimes used for toddlers who cannot toddle but must hold onto something while walking.

On average, a child begins walking between 9 and 14 months of age. The age at which children start to walk can generally be determined by their gender, physical attributes and family genes. Small, light children usually walk earlier than heavy, large children.


Talking is the next milestone of which parents are typically aware. A toddler's first word most often occurs around 12 months, but again this is only an average. The child will then continue to steadily add to his or her vocabulary until around the age of 18 months when language increases rapidly. He or she may learn as many as 7-9 new words a day. Around this time, toddlers generally know about 50 words. At 21 months is when toddlers begin to incorporate two word phrases into their vocabulary, such as "I go", "mama give", and "baby play". Before going to sleep they often engage in a monologue called crib talk in which they practice conversational skills. At this age, children are becoming very proficient at conveying their wants and needs to their parents in a verbal fashion.

Emotions and self

There are several other important milestones that are achieved in this time period that parents tend to not emphasize as much as walking and talking. Gaining the ability to point at whatever it is the child wants you to see shows huge psychological gains in a toddler. This generally happens before a child's first birthday.

This age is sometimes referred to as 'the terrible twos',[3][4] because of the temper tantrums for which they are famous. This stage can begin as early as nine months old depending on the child and environment. The toddler is discovering that they are a separate being from their parent and are testing their boundaries in learning the way the world around them works. Although the toddler is in their exploratory phase, it is also important to understand that the methods used by the parents for communicating with the toddler can either set off a tantrum or calm the situation.[5] This time between the ages of two and five when they are reaching for independence repeats itself during adolescence.

Self-awareness is another milestone that helps parents understand how a toddler is reacting. Around 18 months of age, a child will begin to recognize himself or herself as a separate physical being with his/her own thoughts and actions. A parent can test if this milestone has been reached by noticing if the toddler recognizes that their reflection in a mirror is in fact themselves. One way to test this is to put lipstick on the child's forehead and show them their own reflection. Upon seeing the out-of-the-ordinary mark, if the child reaches to her own forehead, the child has achieved this important milestone. Along with self recognition comes feelings of embarrassment and pride that the child had not previously experienced.

Toilet training

Although there is a growing movement of parents who choose to help their babies use the toilet from birth (see "Elimination Communication" and "Infant potty training method" for more details), most children in the United States are toilet trained while they are toddlers. In most Western countries, toilet training can begin as early as 9 months (as soon as the child starts to walk) for some, while others are not ready to begin toilet training until they are up to three years old. Two important indicators of toilet training readiness are whether a child understands the concept of using the toilet and whether they have any control over excreting waste (parents who use elimination communication do not have to wait for these readiness signs to help their babies use the potty). This can be a frustrating time for parents. Some toddlers can learn this task in a week, while some take two or three months.[citation needed]

Overview table

The toddler developmental timeline shows what an average toddler can do at what age. Times vary greatly from child to child. It is common for some toddlers to master certain skills (such as walking) well before other skills (like talking). Even close siblings can vary greatly in the time taken to achieve each key milestone.

Age Physical Mental Emotional
12–14 months
  • Walk alone well.
  • Drink from a cup (poorly).
  • Turn pages in a book (a few at a time).
  • Play ball by rolling or tossing it.
  • Uses one or two syllable words such as "ball" or "cookie"
  • Can follow a simple command with an associated gesture, such as: bringing a cup to you when you point at it and say "Please bring me the cup".
  • Use gestures or words to convey objects, such as: Pointing at a book, raising arms to be picked up, or saying "cup".
  • Mimic actions such as covering eyes while playing Peekaboo.
15–18 months
  • Uses 10–20 words.
  • May be able to follow a command without a gesture.
  • Stack two blocks.
19–24 months
  • Feed self with a spoon.
  • Run.
  • Climb into a small chair.
  • Walk up steps.
  • Helps with dressing: Likes to dress and undress self.
  • Speaks 20–50 words; understands many more
  • Stack six blocks
  • Understands non-physical relationships such as turning on lights or pushing buttons.
  • Sorting toys.
  • Searching for hidden objects.
  • Problem solving through experimentation.
25–36 months
  • Advanced mobility and climbing skills.
  • Increased dexterity with small objects, puzzles.
  • Able to dress oneself.
  • Speaking in sentences.
  • Ability to be independent to primary care giver.
  • Easily learns new words, places and people's names.
  • Anticipates routines.
  • Toilet learning continues
  • Plays with toys in imaginative ways.
  • Attempts to sing in-time with songs.
  • Knows boys from girls.
  • Shows preferences, such as clothes and entertainment.
  • Knows how to play different games.

See also


Preceded by
Stages of human development
Succeeded by

Simple English

A toddler is a child between the ages of one to three years old. During this time, the child learns how to use their hands, stand and walk, and also how to communicate with others.

Most children are toilet trained ("potty training") while they are toddlers. Even when toddlers can walk, they are often transported in a stroller (buggy, pushchair, push-chair), when they are tired, or for long distances.


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