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Emotional Development in two to five year olds

Emotional Development in two to five year olds

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, at play groups and daycare. This is a big change for young children.

There are new skills to learn like toilet 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!

Give your child the opportunity to make choices – this helps them to feel in control and avoid emotional meltdowns. Simple questions like “would you like your red shorts or your blue shorts?” can help prevent a battle over getting dressed in the morning.  Keep it simple - your little one will struggle if given too much choice. Stick to two or three things that are achievable for both of you.

Routines and boundaries help your child to feel safe and secure because they know how their day will be. Talk them through what’s going to happen that day. Letting them know what’s planned. Often excites them and they cooperate more as they have something to look forward to. 

At times yes they won’t want to do what you ask. It’s important to stay calm and kind and use your techniques learnt in our Emotional Development for one to two year olds, giving them warning before doing something. Your growing toddlers just want to feel in control, but they also need to feel safe by knowing that they can look to you for direction. Children learn from you, your time and behaviour will define your child’s tone and behaviour. It’s a tough pill to swallow isn’t it.

Once you have your routines in place, it’s okay to be flexible. Holidays are a break for everybody, but you may like to keep things like morning and evening / bedtime routines the same. 

Too many rules can be hard to manage for you and your child - pick what is important to your family.

Young children have lots of energy that needs to be burned for both theirs and OUR sanity! They love to go outside and keep active, visit the park or go to the beach. Opportunities to meet with other children mean that they learn many valuable lessons from each other. 

Quiet times with family are important too. Reading, sharing quiet times and playing with Busy Books helps your child know that they are important to you. This helps them build their self-esteem as well as their attention span. Reading and playing Busy Books first thing in the morning, using a morning basket for morning quiet time or reading / playing Busy Books before bed can be great quiet time ideas.

Here is what Alyce has to say about incorporating our Busy Books in their nighttime routine: 

"We ABSOLUTELY LOVE our busy book bundle. We now include in our nightly wind-down routine. After dinner and bath, our 3 year old chooses his pages to do. Its that final bit of mental stimulation/exertion before books and bed. Love it!! my husband and I are both teachers and think this is a brilliant concept and very well made product. Well done to you." 

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