Brain Development (Toddlers, 1-3 Years)


Brain development shows a child’s increasing ability to understand his or her environment. As children grow and develop, they will learn many new things and begin to solve problems in their daily life.

For toddlers, the following skills will typically be developing:

  1. Toddlers start to use number words in songs, but they don’t yet understand what numbers mean.
  2. Toddlers begin to follow familiar routines in play, like putting a babydoll to sleep.
  3. Toddlers start to explore simple shape puzzles and nesting cups, and can understand some size words, such as “big” and “little.”
  4. Toddlers are curious about the world and begin to ask lots of “why” questions about their environment.
  5. Toddlers enjoy spending time outside observing nature. They enjoy using all of their senses: tasting, seeing, hearing, touching and smelling.
  6. Toddlers pretend to be animals by imitating their motions and sounds: flying like a bird, roaring like a lion.

What can you do at home to help your toddler develop these skills?

  1. Sing counting songs with your toddler, and encourage your child to ask for more during snack, either with words or a hand signal.
  2. Provide toys children can use to demonstrate an understanding of their world: cooking, grocery shopping, taking care of babies.
  3. Provide simple puzzles and nesting cups for your toddler to explore. Offer help if your child gets stuck. Use size words with your toddler, and point out things that are big and little.
  4. Be patient when your toddler asks lots of “why” questions, and try to answer as many as possible.
  5. Spend time with your toddler outside by going for a walk, collecting leaves, listening to the wind and smelling flowers.
  6. Use animal motions during routines: “Let’s fly like a bird to the bathroom for bathtime.”

Watch this video for more brain-building activity tips (Click Here For Spanish Version):

Source: Parents Know, Kids Grow 
PDF download: Download Early Learning: Birth – 3 Years