Your toddler is now rapidly approaching his or her second birthday — a major milestone. Many parents are surprised to see that their children seem to enter the Terrible Twos early, long before hitting that big milestone. In most children, this is a normal and important developmental stage: they are testing the boundaries of their world and learning what is and is not possible.

Children at this age are often naturally busy, energetic, and social. This doesn’t mean they aren’t shy around strangers — only that they are very interested in the social world and are beginning to recognize how people act differently. They are also learning to express their needs and desires more appropriately.

Still, there are certain signs you shouldn’t ignore in your child’s physical or emotional development.

If you’re concerned with how your child interacts with others, trust your judgment and talk with your healthcare provider, particularly if it looks like your child is regressing in his or her developmental milestones. If your child has not reached a particular milestone, there may be nothing to be concerned about, but it doesn’t hurt to make an appointment for an evaluation.

Age 20-24 months
Your baby may be able to:You may want to talk to a healthcare professional if your baby:
Show defiant behaviorDoesn't make eye contact with caregivers (such as when being fed)
Throw a ball overhand and kick a ball forwardDoesn't play with other people
Use a spoon and drink from a cup by 24 monthsDoesn't know what to do with common things, like a brush, fork, or spoon
Begin to say his or her own name at 22-24 monthsDoesn't respond to his or her own name, or to the sound of a familiar voice
Help to undress and put things away by 18-24 monthsDoesn't smile when smiled at
Listen to stories when shown pictures and talk about immediate experiences by 24 monthsShows no interest in stimulus such as books or sharing interest and enjoyment
Know names of familiar people and body partsDoesn't point, wave goodbye, or use other gestures to communicate
Name items in a picture book, such as a cat, bird, or dogCan't identify simple pictures


Does this answer your question? If not, Ask Bundoo.


  1. National Institutes of Health. Toddler Development.
  2. Autism in Children.
  3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Developmental Milestones Checklist.


  1. “Show defiant behavior.” CHECK. 😉


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