Toddlers are so much fun. They are discovering the world around them every day. And watching their joy and excitement is intoxicating. If you’ve got a toddler that’s around two years old, you are likely becoming familiar with the phrase, “the terrible twos.”
This is the developmental stage where your child is struggling to establish independence for the first time. They are torn between wanting to do things on their own and the comfort and certainty of having you there to take care of their needs and desires. If you think you are confused, just think how confused they must be!
Here are some tips to help you and your little one get through this time with as little drama as possible.
Stick to a Schedule
We know that this is easier said than done, but it can really help. Regular nap times, even if they are a struggle, are really important during this time.
Set Boundaries and Be Consistent
Your child is beginning to understand consequences and is learning if and how they can manipulate situations to get what they want. If you cave, and don’t follow through on your promises for rewards or punishments, you are teaching them that they can’t take you at your word.
Be consistent. Don’t let your mood or your needs override what is best for your toddler. It can be easy to just let things go when you are tired. Push through the sleeplessness and in a few months you’ll be really glad that you did.
Don’t give in to a tantrum because it is the path of least resistance. Tantrums are likely to be common during this stage of development. When you stay calm, don’t raise your voice, soothe your child’s anxiety and ask them what they want or need, it encourages them to use their words, understand their emotions, and begin to moderate their emotional responses.
Don’t pick fights. If you negotiate everything and turn everything into a “who is going to win” situation, you and your child are going to be constantly exhausted. This can become your new normal, and that’s not something you want.
Give us a call here at Texas Children’s Academy if you’d like to learn more about our daycare and summer camp programs. We look forward to hearing from you!