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  5. What does your toddler (2-3 years) know?

What does your toddler (2-3 years) know? Lock Rss

Hi everyone

Something has been bothering me lately and that is the worry about what DS "should" know or be learning.

To be honest, we pretty much just have fun as much as possible. Sure we (I) count and name colours and shapes but it doesn't happen regularly. DS does not appear to be interested in such learning.

What does your toddler (2-3 years old) know or what are they learning at the moment?

Should I be allocating a small amount of time each day to focus on such learning?

Do you think it's important for a child this age to know such things as numbers/counting, letters, shapes and colours? If so, why/why not?

Thank you
msmusic I;m guessing your ds is awesome and "physical" type stuff. I really believe at this stage they are either one or the other. Im sure he's byno means "stupid" butis just more interested in physical type stuff - balls and bikes and climbing etc???

Bennett is just on 3 and remarkable in his "learned" stuff like counting and spelling and reading but hey the kid cant kick a ball or ride a bike. LMAO I'm not concerned and I'm sure their growing brains can't always cope with all this stuff we want them to do.

What kind of activites do you do with him? things like computer games, Library, museums etc can help with education type stuff. Playgroups and Daycare are also a good wayto get others opinions of where is is at?


Steph VIC Mummy to one gorgeous boy

I trained as a teacher & I can tell you the best way for kids to learn anything is for you to talk about it. So if you're talking about colours & counting & letters & shapes then you're doing everything right. Some kids pick it up quickly, some take longer but if you start at this age, 2-3, then by the time your son goes to school, he'll have an awesome start. Don't worry that he's not taking it in, he will be & one day he will surprise you with how much he's learnt from you.

Heidi, NZ, DD apr 05, DS apr 07


I think this is an excellent question to ask...I often wonder it myself. I think 'should he know more, is he learning enough ect ect...'

My DS is 2 1/2 and in the last few months has been picking things up alot more. I guess he has just matured in some areas and his little brain is absorbing more than it use to. He is an absolute parrot and copies everythign you say, however when we do counting he always misses No 2 and jumps straight in to 10, 11, 12, 13 ect..

As far as colours. I started associating colours with his favourite toys or colour of his t-shirt. so we say Red like your fire engine, and green like the grass ect. YOu get the idea.

Sorry I went on so much but I just got a little carried away.

Kell - 2 handsome boys!!!

Hayley is 2 and a half and knows (sort of) how to count to ten, she recognises the number 5, she knows some basic shapes and also knows star shape. She knows/understands heaps of words and can say heaps too. Also says 2 to 3 word sentences.

We are teaching her the alphabet atm and she can also sing or say a few nursery rhymes.

She knows some body parts too.

Cassie, mum to Hayley and Skye

Jayden has just turned two and like every mum I like to think he's pretty smart! Here's what he can do-

*He can count to fifteen and is starting to recognise numbers by sight

*He can say his alphabet and is learning the Auslan version with his fingers too.

*He knows most shapes and colours

*He's an absolute parrot and you can have proper conversations with him.

*He can sing bits and pieces of about a dozen different songs(mostly Wiggles) and nursery rhymes

*He recognises different makes of cars-he will see a car like ours and say "that looks like mummys car". He knows about 10 that he's familiar with-like family or neighbours cars.

*He knows all his body parts-even things like armpits or heels.

*He's obsessed with anything on wheels(typical boy!) but will say "look at that big 4WD" or "look at that silver ute" rather than just saying "car"

I sometimes forget he's only 2-they grow up so quickly don't they.

He needs some work on his motor skills though-he was 15 months before he walked and is just learning how to catch and kick balls. we have a really sloping backyard so there's not really anywhere for him to run around properly unless we go to the park.

I love hearing what everyone elses little ones are up to-they are all so unique and precious!

Beefyboyz, DS1 almost 3, DS2 18mths

My little man is two and he can not tell you the colour of anything, his counting skills are lacking, and as for letters, what are they?? But he can tell you what a loader is and how it differs from a grader. He can operate the dvd player better than dad or attempt to say grace at dinner. He is unique and is learning in his own style. I feel as long as he is happy and loved it should not matter if he thinks every color is pink. He has the rest of his life to become brillant so I plan on letting him be a toddler for a little while yet.

Amanda NSW

Good on you.

Cassie, mum to Hayley and Skye

my boy is 3 1/2 and knows his colours, numbers etc but i was worried about his lack of interest in writing his name ect, just doesnt want to learn and i was on another forum (not sure if i can say that) a a teacher told me that at this age play is the most important thing thats how they learn, one day he will want to learn this stuff and he will. i found teaching colours ect was easy if you get great colouful books i think we have sparkly ones that have shapes, numbers, colours and something eles that one got destroyed, but that was how my man learnt his. good luck im sure he will learn when hes ready.
Lola your child sounds brilliant, does he take after his mum?

My boy is 3 and has had me worried for quite some time. He is only starting to show an interest in "mental" stuff but I always try to use everyday occurances as a learning experience. EG when he's riding his bike I point out the circle of his tyre etc. He can draw lovely pictures. One on the bathroom wall (with bath crayons) of himself - penis and all. Had to get a photo of that one for the album. LOL. I started to teach him signing at 15 months and he picked that up very fast. He still uses it alot for the words he won't attempt to say. I sort of blamed the signing for a while as to why he wouldn't/couldn't talk but now know that is not the case because in true toddler fashion he is coming along nicely with his attempts at speech. He just needed to do it in his own time and at his own speed.

To all you mums - remember not to compare (I'm guilty of it too) but to CHERISH.

Karen, mum to 7 wonderful children, Qld

my son is 2 1/2.I hate parents that brag about their kids! I think its best not to compare as it worries us if our child isnt doing something yet(although i always find myself comparing my kids to others... its really hard not to). Having said that, i find that my son learns through play... I make a game of everything! If you are creative you can teach them just about anything and they dont even realise they learnt something new! Eg: to teach my son some farm animals i used one of those books that has buttons down the side and when you press the button it makes the noise of that particular animal. First I used to read it to him then I got my son to stand a couple of metres away and as i said an animal i got him to run up to the book and press the button of that animal to hear what noise it makes.... he then ran back to the spot and we kept playing. of course at first he got them wrong but i just corrected him. He absolutely loves playing that game... he giggles so much as he runs towards me to press the buttons now he always grabs that book and wants to play.. he now knows them!
You dont have to expect them to learn, by playing the same "learning games" over and over eventually they pick it up and its so much fun for both of us!
I think painting is one of the best ways for them to learn colours... well Im trying that out myself. but i do think that as long as we make effort as parents and give them their time then eventually they will pick it up and it doesnt really matter how long it takes them... just remember they are only toddlers so there is no need to stress out or stress them out yet... JUST LET THEM HAVE FUN!

Hi Karen,

I wish he took after me LOL! He constantly suprises us-re-reading my post I come across as some pushy mother who doesn't let her kids have any fun and brags all the time, but I did'nt mean it to come across like that - I'm just a proud mum!!

I also just try to teach my boys things through play, like colours and numbers. And I'm constantly talking to them, giving them a running commentary on whatever we're doing. I'm suprised Jay's 1st words weren't "shut up mum!"

ALL kids are special, and all have their strengths and weaknesses.

I worry about Jay not socialising enough with other kids-he's got a real temper and needs to learn how to share! I'm going to start taking him to playgroup to see if that helps.

I'm sure this post wasn't started to make mums feel worried about their toddlers development, but as a space for proud mums to share in their delight at new things.

Let's all be proud at whatever our kids can do, at the end of the day if they are loved that's all that matters!


Beefyboyz, DS1 almost 3, DS2 18mths

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