Approaches to Play and Learning
Your toddler’s job is to play, and he takes that job very seriously! And although he still enjoys playing alone, he’s also ready to start playing with others. And that includes many people — his friends, his classmates and you. He might organize a toy car race or help build a castle with blocks. Try not to interrupt when he’s concentrating on a task. He’s focusing on finishing what he started! His imagination is growing each day. Thankfully, his attentiveness is keeping pace. Watch as he works hard to master new tasks…or asks for help when he needs it. That’s a (playful) job well done!
“I Do It!”
It’s the toddler’s battle cry: “I do it!” She’s ready to try things on her own, and it’s time to let her! When she wants to buckle herself into her car seat, patiently wait and lovingly give tips if she asks. This growing independence means she’s showing you her initiative. That’s a healthy place for her to be! She’s asking lots of questions now. As her go-to resource, you’re the one who can provide her with all (or maybe just most) the answers.
My Imagination Makes Playtime Fun!
Have you ever hosted a tea party with your toddler even without all the “right” supplies? That’s okay! In your toddler’s mind, a stick becomes a spoon and a blanket is a tablecloth. That’s the beauty of his growing imagination and the gift of his flexible thinking. So, as you serve tea to GI Joe in an empty stacking cup, know that your tea party is as perfect as your toddler needs it to be!
I Can Finish What I Started.
The dog may lick her face and the TV might blare in the background, but your toddler is learning how to focus her attention on the task at hand. She’s determined to master her activity. That might be stacking blocks or eating peas. And as you likely know all too well, nothing can get in the way! Well, almost nothing. Except maybe that beautiful dandelion or that shiny car or… The good news is that her attention span is growing, and she’s learning how to finish what she began.
Play with Me!
It’s time to introduce your toddler to some new social situations. He’s ready to play with his peers – at least for short periods of time. Watch as he gets caught up in imaginative and friendly play with his friends! Will they pretend to cook a meal? Build something with blocks? His imagination is unlimited, and his social skills are expanding!
All children learn and grow at their own pace and in their own way. For more information about the skills and milestones for your child's age check out our developmental milestones resource page. If you continue to have concerns or questions please give us a call at 1-800-299-1627.