18-24 months old

Children this age…

  • May become very wary of, and often refuse, new foods
  • Will enjoy ‘joining in’ when you're cooking – e.g. mixing ingredients with a spoon in a plastic bowl
  • Can spend ages pushing dolls around in a buggy
  • While standing, may be able to bend over to pick something up without falling over
  • May be able to turn doorknobs and screw and unscrew things
  • Are likely to have mastered a range of words and may even be talking in short sentences

Can your toddler…

  • … build a tower of blocks?
  • …point to things in books, such as a cow, a dog, or a ball?
  • …make animal noises?
  • … turn the pages of a book?

Personality plus!

Your baby is a real little person now. But, of course, real little people want independence, so don’t be surprised if you have some tussles as they try to assert themselves.

For example, your toddler might not want to sit in the highchair or the pram. Or they might insist on trying to dress or undress without your help. This is fine if you have plenty of time, but when you don’t, the sparks can fly! Try as much as you can to let your little one do things solo - this is how they learn.

Good nutrition

It can be difficult to try to achieve balanced meals, since toddlers often have very clear ideas about what they are prepared to eat and may be reluctant to try anything new.

This reluctance to try new things may be the result of a survival instinct which stops toddlers from eating everything they come across, such as poisonous berries. This can mean offering a toddler a new food up to ten times before he or she will agree to try it!

Needless to say, this can be a frustrating time for parents. Just do your best to give a varied diet, and keep trying with any foods that have been rejected. By including as wide a variety of foods as possible, you'll ensure your toddler gets the nourishment he or she needs.

Take a height check…

Wondering how tall your 2-year-old will be as a grown-up? You can measure your child's height and use the “adult height predictor” page in your red book to see what his or her future might hold!