Cognitive Development for Toddlers 24 – 36 Months

In Terms of Cognitive Development, Most 3 Year Olds Can:

  • Be able to control bladder and bowel functions, but still has accidents
  • Play with others for short periods of time
  • Starts learning how to dress herself
  • Wants to help parents
  • Possibly have an imaginary friend
  • Resist taking a nap but could still need one
  • Become shy, possibly start to whine and possibly procrastinate
  • Possibly become aggressive and frustrated easily
  • Begin to follow simple rules
  • Not like change
  • Possibly show a wide array and quickly change emotions

Parenting Tips for Toddler Cognitive Development:

Suggested ideas to help a child between 2 and 3 years develop his or her social and problem-solving skills:

  • Play hide the bear. Hide a stuffed animal under something. Give your child clues to help her find it. ‘Where’s the bear? She’s under something red.’ Keep giving her clues until she finds it. Then it’s her turn to hide something and you try to find it. Where does this go?
  • Two to three year olds are very good at helping you clean up, if you make it a game. If a book is on the floor and it belongs on the end table, ask her, ‘where does this go?’
  • Learn colors with laundry. Helping you sort the laundry is a great way to learn colors. All the blue clothes go on one pile all the white on another, etc. Remember to thank him for being such a good helper.
  • Help her understand her feelings. When you teach your child the names that go with feelings, she will be better able to handle her feelings. If you know your child is frustrated, us the words, ‘I can see that you are frustrated, but it will be your turn in a minute.’
  • Have fun with friends. Invite one of your child’s friends to come play for a short period of time. Make sure there are enough toys to share. If the weather is nice, plan to meet a friend at the playground.
  • Play the silly mix-up game. While your child is getting ready for bed, remind him to brush his toes. As you comb his hair, tell her how much you like combing his arms. He’ll laugh and enjoy correcting you by telling you the right name.
  • Find big and little. Put a few shoes together and ask her to find the big shoe, now find the little shoe. It’s a great game to play at a park, ‘I see a big dog, let’s look for a little one’ or even at the supermarket.
  • Look for letters. When you are in the car, on a bus or even taking a walk, you can look for letters on the store signs, billboards, bumper stickers or anything else. ‘I see the big, yellow M, do you?’