Between the ages of two to five years old there will be lots of changes as your child moves away from babyhood to being able to manage a lot more on their own. Your child may be spending a lot more of their time with other people, going to preschool and nursery. This is a big change for young children.
There are new skills to learn like potty training and speech and language. These new skills will be learnt through play. Enjoy this special time together – you are your child’s first teacher!
Once children begin to learn to talk they can express their feelings more easily and regulate their emotional responses.
Labelling children’s emotions and praising behaviour will help your child to begin to understand their feelings ie. “you are so brave to try something new”, “you are staying so calm even though you are finding the puzzle difficult, well done”.
You could also try copying the facial expressions they use; this helps them see you understand them.
Things to do to support your childs emotional wellbeing:
- Routines like bedtime and meal times help to give the day structure. This helps your child knows what is happening next and what to expect, making them feel safe and secure
- Preparing for change is really important for a toddler. They need ‘warning’ of going between activities as it takes them longer to process this change. For example ‘In 5 minutes* we’ll be having lunch. Then we’ll play with your bricks again’ helps your toddler to know what’s coming next. They don’t have to panic that they will never play with their bricks again!
*Remember, a toddler won’t know what 5 minutes is so use a timer on your phone with an alarm and get your child used the sound of when time is up.
- Play games together, this doesn’t have to be for hours on end but a small amount (10-15mins) of child directed play daily is enough.
- Tea set and play food (you could use pots and pans from the kitchen for this)
- Doll’s, pushchairs (you could use nappies and old baby clothes for this)
- Various dressing up clothes (use you own old clothes, no need to buy any)
Parenting and Family Relationships
There are a variety of courses and one-off sessions for parents in Luton to promote positive, nurturing and responsive parenting
Safe at Home Luton is a child accident prevention programme aimed at families from pregnancy through to the child’s 5th birthday.
If you think that your child may have special educational needs or disabilities (SEND) you should speak to someone about your concerns- find out more on Luton’s Local Offer
Five to Thrive
Just as our child’s body grows better when you give them good food, your child’s brain grows better when you do five simple things that feed the growing brain:
Respond ● Cuddle ● Relax ● Play ● Talk