What social skills should a 2 year old have?

Answered by Robert Flynn

When it comes to social skills, two-year-olds are capable of displaying empathy and understanding the feelings of others. It’s quite amazing to see how they can comfort a peer who is hurt or even cry themselves when they see another child who is upset. This shows that they are developing a sense of empathy and are able to connect with the emotions of those around them.

However, it’s important to note that two-year-olds are still in the early stages of learning how to navigate social interactions. They may often say “No!” as a way of asserting their independence and expressing their own desires. This is a normal part of their development as they are learning to assert themselves and establish their own boundaries.

Conflicts with friends can also be a common occurrence at this age. Toddlers are still learning how to share, take turns, and cooperate with others. They may struggle with resolving conflicts and may resort to hitting, biting, or grabbing toys from their peers. It’s important for caregivers to provide guidance and teach them appropriate ways to handle conflicts, such as using words to express their feelings or seeking help from an adult.

In addition to empathy and conflict resolution, there are other social skills that two-year-olds should start developing. These include:

1. Taking turns: Encouraging toddlers to take turns during playtime or when sharing toys can help them learn patience and develop the ability to wait for their turn.

2. Sharing: While sharing can be challenging for toddlers, it’s important to teach them the concept of sharing and encourage them to share their toys with others.

3. Following simple instructions: Two-year-olds should be able to understand and follow simple instructions, such as “put your toys away” or “come here.”

4. Engaging in pretend play: Pretend play helps toddlers develop their imagination and creativity. They may start imitating actions and behaviors they observe in others, such as pretending to cook or take care of a doll.

5. Showing manners: Although they may still need reminders, two-year-olds can begin to understand basic manners like saying “please” and “thank you.”

6. Engaging in parallel play: Parallel play is when toddlers play alongside each other without necessarily interacting. This is a normal part of their social development as they begin to observe and learn from their peers.

It’s important to remember that every child develops at their own pace, and some may acquire social skills earlier or later than others. Providing a nurturing and supportive environment, setting a positive example, and offering opportunities for social interactions can all help foster the development of social skills in two-year-olds.