Around this age, toddlers are becoming more aware of how their body “fits” into the environment around them. When they were younger, for example, they might’ve tried to sit in a toy stroller, but now they know just by looking at it that they are too big. They’re also learning how to adjust their bodies in order to fit through small spaces or navigate around objects without bumping into them.
When it’s time for arts and crafts, little ones are ready to open and close children’s scissors (still using two hands). They can also now tolerate a variety of textures, so it’s a great time to use materials that are sticky, slimy, etc. for that all-important messy play!
When it’s time for routines like reading, children draw on past experience to start preparing: Running to grab a book when they hear the word “read,” for example. While reading, they may notice new details, such as pointing out that a tree has no leaves. They also begin “reading” by describing, in very simple terms, what’s happening in the pictures.
Playtime reaches a new level as toddlers develop the ability to play with more complex toys, such as wind-up toys. And, drumroll…they may graduate to building a tower of 6 blocks! They also start building towers with other things, which shows they’re using symbolic problem solving to find alternate ways to do things.
Conversations become more fun as little ones learn new words quickly, answer simple questions, and develop the ability to actively listen for short periods of time (3-6 minutes at this age).
Sense of self continues to develop as children begin to describe themselves (“I have brown eyes,” for example). Around other children, they can now participate in simple group activities, and show increased awareness of others’ feelings.
Remember that children are delightfully unique and some of these milestones will happen before or after this month.