When it comes to cognitive development at this stage, pretend play is extremely important. At 24 to 30 months, toddlers are generally quite adept at playing pretend. They can substitute objects for another, such as a shoebox for a doll’s bed or a paper towel tube for a spyglass. They derive great pleasure from silliness,such as the idea that a toy car might “moo” instead of “beep”. Use pretend play to help your child understand or manage situations and emotions, such as going to the doctor or meeting a new babysitter. Let him be in charge: ask questions to drive the game and allow him to make choices.
Between 30 to 36 months, your toddler may exhibit enhanced problem solving abilities. He can remember what happened yesterday, act out his own stories, and apply logic to situations. For example, he can incorporate a sequence of events or objects during pretend play, such as tucking his teddy bear into bed with a blanket and a lullaby. Promote his use of logic by asking him questions about everyday activities, such as “It is raining outside. What do we need to stay dry?”
Activities to Stimulate Toddler Development
Opportunities to support your toddler’s positive development are all around you. Take advantage of everyday tasks and events to help him learn and develop, all the while providing him with the best nutrition to nourish his milestone achievements. Here are some fun activities for you to enjoy together:
Reading aloud every day.
- Even if you only read for 5 or 10 minutes, your child will learn words by hearing you say them.
- Make it an interactive experience - name objects in the books and let him point to them.
Explain things as they're happening.
- Make it a conversation, and listen actively when he talks.
- Play peek-a-boo. He truly believes he's invisible when he holds his hands over his eyes.
Ask him to find things.
- You'll be surprised how much he knows.
Expand on his words.
- If he says "car," make it into a sentence.
Put faces to voices to stimulate memory.
- When friends and family call on the phone, put pictures near the phone so he can see who's talking to him.
- Introduce nursery rhymes, finger plays and counting rhymes.
- Listen to recordings.
Use the mirror.
- Let him make faces and name his body parts.
Play with blocks to explore cause-and-effect.
Introduce new environments.
- New playgrounds, the grocery store, or the children's room at the library are all exciting places to explore.
Play with writing.
- Experiment with chunky crayons.
- Help him colour on paper with them, and learn NOT to eat them.
Provide him with the opportunity to make appropriate choices.
- Let him choose his shirt or what kind of fruit he would like to eat.
Why is Nutrition Important?
Nutrition is linked to all aspects of your child’s growth and development. Toddlers need specific vitamins and minerals to help their bodies and minds develop and mature as well as to meet their increasing energy needs.