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What does your 2 1/2 year old know?

My son doesn't the typical things it seems other 2 year olds know. He knows a few colors.. green, yellow and black. He can count to 10. He can recite the alphabet, but only recognizes G, W, and O. He knows a circle and a star. I get a little discouraged when I see that other kids his age that know and recognize all their letters, numbers, shapes and colors. I don't sit down with him to teach him these things. I do things in play, but he doesn't seem to retain it all. He does know how to match objects. He can match colors and letters. He's very imaginative, loves to be read to, and loves pretend play. He's very good at building things with his blocks. I try to focus on what he knows and try to just let him enjoy himself. I guess I'm just hung up on the whole numbers, letters, colors thing. Does your two year old know all these things?

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Asked by JDanesMommy at 12:10 PM on Dec. 5, 2008 in Toddlers (1-2)

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Answers (10)
  • My son turned 2 in August, and does know his ABC's and can count to 14 (why an odd # I don't know, but that's always where he stops), and knows names of colors, but not to identify them. It doesn't sound like it's anything fo ryou to be concerned about, as long as he's learning things from playing. With my older two kids, they seemed to learn more from playing than from me trying to actually "teach" them. So I'd just say keep trying to incorporate these "learning" moments into his playing, and he'll get it!

    Answer by amy_k_in_pa at 12:21 PM on Dec. 5, 2008

  • Relax. He sounds great!
    Yes, it is easy to get hung up on the "academic" things. But there is so much for kids to learn that we forget everything else - the everyday science of noticing wind in the trees, studying bugs in the grass, playing fill the pail and dump it out. All of those are learning experiences. Then there's the physical things - jumping over cracks in the sidewalk, running races, playing catch. And pretend play is very important too - it teaches kids how to think, how to solve problems... did you know that? Kids will frequently work through social problems in their pretend play. And leads us to the social skills - sharing, taking turns, working out disputes. And then there are the everyday life skills - potty training, getting dressed, learning to pick up and clean, the beginnings of learning to cook, everything you do for him, everyday. He is trying to learn ALL of this.

    Answer by kaycee14 at 12:22 PM on Dec. 5, 2008

  • These "little wonders" you see that know all of their academic items, how are they doing in the other areas? Probably lagging behind. Try to remember, kids learn things in their own order, at their own pace. A 2-year-old that knows how to read may very well flunk out of high school while a kid who enjoys playing and doesn't learn to read until grade school may graduate top of his class from Harvard. Early mastery of a few topics does not mean a kid is any smarter. Let him enjoy being a kid and enjoy watching him. Help him learn when he wants to so you keep learning fun.

    Answer by kaycee14 at 12:22 PM on Dec. 5, 2008

  • I think the important thing is that he loves to learn not how much he has learned. I watch my 2 year old and have learned to back off when it isn't fun for him anymore. He will learn at his own speed but if you put a bad taste in his mouth about learning (or reading for that matter) it will become a stumbling block to him. It sounds like you already have been doing a great job. Keep up the good work and keep up the play!

    Answer by mommie_2boys at 12:27 PM on Dec. 5, 2008

  • Maybe he will respond better to sitting down with flash cards or something. Every child is different. Every child learns different. What works for my kids may not on yours and vis versa. dont get discouraged. I used to work in child care and kids would come into my room and be a seemingly slow learner but I would just sit down separately with them and teach them differently and they were every bit as smart as the next kid but they just needed a different method of learning. They always catch up!

    Answer by LovinEveryDay at 12:35 PM on Dec. 5, 2008

  • Thanks! While I tell myself that kids learn in their own time, it drives me crazy sometimes, lol. I also hate hearing, "Oh, Josiah doesn't know that yet??". I definitely don't want him to fall out the want to learn. I've tried flash cards, but he seems so bored that I've decided not to do them anymore. He easily picks up everthing else... he just doesn't seem interested in the whole academic side of things. I'll just keep incorporating things in fun ways, and he'll eventually get it. Just gotta keep telling myself that ; ).


    Answer by JDanesMommy at 1:04 PM on Dec. 5, 2008

  • Try not to compare your child to others.... my son is 23 months and is only saying 6 or 7 words. He started walking at 9 months but hes a late talker. I babysit a little boy who is only a day older then my son and he talks up a storm but I dont compare them because even though my son cant say much right now, I know he is very smart and understands most of what we tell him. My husband and I read to him every night and he can point out most of the animals in his books and sometimes even trys to say what they are. Just give your child some time... every child is different and they learn at there own speed. Good luck to you!

    Answer by LANDENSMOMMYlmk at 1:37 PM on Dec. 5, 2008

  • Sounds like he is doing great. I worked at a preschool and we would get 31/2 year olds that didn't even know the difference between a color and a shape, or a letter and a number. Keep teaching through play, and keep reading!

    Answer by AJmamma at 3:22 PM on Dec. 5, 2008

  • I thought my son was getting behind for his age when we lived with my monster in law and no one but me would actually make him say words and ask for things. But we have moved (and experienced the loss of our baby girl) and our son is enrolled in a daycare/preschool center now. Since starting there, his vocabulary has just exploded, he can count to 20, sing his ABC's all by himself, knows his colors, shapes, and many other songs and has been fully potty trained for the past 6 months. So I would say to just give him time and play with him in many different ways, and I'm sure he will catch on really soon. Just make sure he feels comfortable and loved (I tell my son i love him ALL the time) and he will blossom before you know it. :)

    Answer by rogersmommy0306 at 6:59 PM on Dec. 5, 2008

  • I teach Kindergarten and I have children that come to my class that can't do half of what your son is doing at 2. My son was a late bloomer with letters, had no interest what so ever in them. Now he is wanting to start reading chapter books that are above a 1st grade level )he is 6).
    Buy Leo the Late Bloomer and Little Louie the Baby Bloomer to read (they are storybooks) and they will make you feel better.

    Answer by Anonymous at 10:34 AM on Dec. 7, 2008

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