2 to 4 Years Old
Developmental milestone: Homing in on a single activity.
Focus on: A defined play space.
Right now your child is: Starting to focus for longer periods of time. Exactly how long is a matter of temperament. Should your child be particularly single-minded, he may stay occupied for as long as 10 minutes. No need to get out the stopwatch. “Any amount of time, even a minute or two, during which children sit and entertain themselves with one thing helps them grow,” says Sklamberg.
Take advantage by: Placing a table and chairs in the child’s bedroom to establish a spot for recreation and creativity. In other words, create an ideal place to look at a book or play with a toy. In doing so, notes Sklamberg, “you’re introducing kids at an early age to the importance of sitting and focusing.” As your child grows and becomes more interested in art, she’ll also have a place to sit and spread out. And do yourself a favor: Consider investing in kid-size chairs that are comfortable and strong enough for adults too. While your tot may not want to cuddle up in a glider chair and look at a book during the middle of the day, she may be more engaged by reading a story with you at a table.