Toddler Milestones

Posted at 1:18 PM on Oct 11, 2022

What does the doc say?

jennifer-purifoy_2.jpegI am constantly amazed how it seems over night that my baby transitions to a toddler.  One moment my baby is walking wobbly and the next they are crouching and sitting on their knees to play with toys.  A tough transition for me is when my 1-year-old needs me for pretty much everything, but my 26-month-old says, “No me…I do it.”  Once they hit 2, the independence starts!!  And, of course, if my 2-year-old sees older brother or sister doing something, they want to do it, too.  I am also fascinated by how a 12-month-old can barely say a few words and then over the course of 6 months, they are talking non-stop.  It's like they had all the words stored up and then turned a switch on.  With my five children ranging from 2 to 20, I truly enjoy all ages; however, I think my favorite time is the toddler years because there is so much change in such a short period of time.  And toddlers are just so darn cute and cuddly.

Dr. Jennifer Purifoy
Northwest Family Clinics
Rogers, MN

Your baby is no longer a baby…they are a toddler and always on the go. Toddler-proofing your home is essential during this time, along with watching for important developmental milestones. Children between one and three are considered toddlers. We will discuss some important milestones your child will hit during this time below. Every child is different and may meet milestones at different times.

Toddler Milestones by Age

Before Age One

  • Plays games like pat-a-cake and peek-a-boo
  • Waves bye-bye
  • Able to say, Mama or Dada
  • Understands “no” and pauses when they hear it
  • Pulls themselves up to stand
  • Surfs – walking along the furniture
  • Picks up small objects between thumb and index finger
  • Sits without assistance
  • Crawls
  • Puts objects into a container
  • Simple gestures like shaking the head no
  • Finger feed themself

By Age Two

  • Notices when others are sad
  • Watches how you react to situations
  • Points to things when asked where they are
  • Says at least two words together
  • Uses additional gestures like blowing kisses
  • Uses hands independently – holding something in one hand and doing something else with the opposite hand
  • Plays with more than one toy at a time
  • Tries to use switches, knobs, or buttons on toys
  • Able to run
  • Kick a ball
  • Walks upstairs with little to no help
  • Eats with a spoon
  • Climbs onto furniture without help
  • Imitates the behavior of others
  • Begins to show defiant behavior

By Age Three

  • Notices other children and wants to play
  • Understandable when speaking
  • Draws a circle when shown how to do so
  • Can have short conversations with others
  • Asks questions
  • Knows actions like running, eating, drinking, etc.
  • Says their first name when asked
  • Avoids hot objects when warned
  • Able to dress themselves
  • Uses a fork
  • Many are potty-trained

What to do if my Child Isn’t Hitting Milestones

Remember, every child is unique; therefore, they may experience milestones at different rates. However, discussing any concerns, you may have with your doctor is essential. Hitting milestones later than others may be completely normal, but sometimes this may be a symptom of something more serious. Talking to your doctor is always best.