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2 Years Old Development

Speech and Language Growth

In previous parts, we've covered the physical development and social development of 2 year old toddlers. Here we'll list some of the language and speech development, and also the intellectual development as well.

Speech Development

  • A 24 month old toddler can say some simple words such as you, me, I, mommy, and daddy. At this age, they also begin to string together two or three words to form very simple sentences for example: "My toy" or "More milk".
  • Talking often to your child will help them develop language and speech skill.
  • They begin to have likes and dislikes, and they also start to say "No", or shake their head if they don't want something.
  • Your toddler will be copying a lot of what you say, and imitate the sounds you make. Be careful about what you say in front of your children at this age. =)
  • If parents take a little time each day to read to their child, he or she will develop a love for reading. At this age, they will have a tendency to enjoy reading the same stories or rhymes over and over again. For example, we read to our two year old boy every night, and there are 3 same books that our son picks night after night: "Back to School", "Step Into Reading: Cars", and "Step Into Reading: Up". Reading to your children everyday will help them develop an understanding of print and become an early reader.
  • They can identify body parts, toys, food, and other objects. You can play games such as "find your nose" or "where are your ears".

Intellectual Development

  • 2 year old children have improved memory, and can now remember where objects are hidden or placed over a longer period of time.
  • Toddlers at this age can begin to sort items based on their color and shape. Colorful stacking and sorting toys will help a child improve their skills in this area.
  • Begins to use objects for their intended purpose. For example, the child will know a phone is used to talk to someone and will put it to their ear and mouth; use a comb to comb their hair; or cover themselves with a blanket when it is bed time.
  • Also begins to understand simple rules, and begin to know what is acceptable and what is not. Of course, this depends largely on the parents taking time to teach the young child. As parents, we all establish rules for our children, and once a rule is set, we need to follow it to set an example and apply it every time. "Do as I say, not as I do" type of rules are never effective.
  • Two year old children are becoming very imaginative, and will engage in pretend play. For example, pretend to talk on the phone; pretend to be a doctor; or drink imaginary tea or milk.
  • Children at this age are also able to understand the meaning of top, under, inside, and outside. You can help your child develop and reinforce this understanding by playing with stacking toys and shape sorters.

The ability to understand language always develop before the ability to speak. So while the speech ability of a 2 year old child is still limited, what they can understand is quite amazing. They will understand most of what you say; they will understand your instructions; and they will follow rules set by you. Take time to talk to your child and read to them. Pay attention and you'll see that your toddler understands a lot!

Baby & Toddler Videos

Toddler Reading Video
Watch a 2 year old toddler read, and see how this child's reading skill develops at 3 and 4 years old.