Play through the ages: Ages 24 to 30 months
Children develop at their own pace with expectations for each age range. Let’s look at the development for ages 24 to 30 months.
As we look at the developmental age range of 24 to 30 months, it is important to know that it is a range highlighted by the continued development of social and emotional skills. We will now discuss some important developmental milestones and appropriate activities associated with children ages 24 to 30 months. The discussion will revolve around five specific areas of development and fun activities associated with increasing a child’s skills within these areas. The expectations are listed in appropriate developmental order below.
Gross motor development is the large muscle movements of the body. For children ages 24 to 30 months, the developmental expectations include jumping up off the floor using both feet, jumping from a single step or low surface, walking upstairs alternating feet one over another and walking a couple of steps on the tips of their toes.
Activities for the 24-to-30-month age range include jumping over objects that are just a few inches tall, hopping in and out of a hula-hoop, walking up a short flight of stairs (two to three steps), having short races with them to influence running and climbing onto the couch and adult chair.
Fine motor development is the small muscle movements of the body. For children ages 24 to 30 months, the developmental expectations include holding a crayon or writing utensil with their fingers (using an adult grip), stacking small blocks up to 10 high and imitating lines horizontally and vertically.
Activities for the 24-to-30-month age range include stacking small objects that can be held in the palm of one hand (cubes, small Tupperware, blocks of any shape), coloring at least three times daily as part of routine, coloring with your children and having them imitate what you do, picking up small objects such as cheerios.
Language development is a child’s ability to communicate with others verbally and nonverbally. For children ages 24 to 30 months, the developmental expectations include using sentences with at least three to four words, naming up to five different objects and five different pictures, and following at least four verbal directions (one direction at a time).
Activities for the 24-to-30-month age range include reading with your child at least twice daily (include their favorite story and one new one), naming objects while they touch them, consistently asking them simple questions throughout the day, offering at least two choices as much as possible (would you like cheerios or oatmeal?) and giving them small chores with easy, one-step directions to follow.
Social development refers to a child’s ability to interact with their environment and other people. For children ages 24 to 30 months, the developmental expectations include beginning cooperative play with other children their own age, understanding how to take turns and doing most everything independently (dressing, using a spoon, using a cup, answering and asking questions).
Activities for the 24-to-30-month age range include spending time with other children their age (library story time, playgroups, play dates), cooperative playing and sharing together with your child, using words like “sharing,” “please,” “thank you,” “more” and “help” while playing with your child and giving them age-appropriate chores to do each and every day.
Emotional development refers to a child’s ability to express their feelings to others and notice how others are feeling. For children ages 24 to 30 months, the developmental expectations include showing an increased range of feelings (affection, pleasure, anger, fear, nervousness, anxiety, jealousy) and having quality and appropriate emotional expressions (emotions match what is happening).
Activities for the 24-to-30-month age range include making different feelings faces (pretend to be happy, mad, excited, angry, frustrated), reading stories involving feelings and emotions, naming your own emotions as you have them, having children spend time with children their own age and not discouraging any emotions your child may have.
To learn about the positive impact children and families are experience due to MSU Extension programs, read our 2016 Impact Reports: “Preparing young children to success” and “Preparing the future generation for success.” Additional impact reports, highlighting even more ways Michigan 4-H and MSU Extension positively impacted individuals and communities in 2016, can be downloaded from the Michigan 4-H website.
Other articles in series
- Play through the ages: An introduction
- Play through the ages: Ages 0 to 6 months
- Play through the ages: Ages 6 to 12 months
- Play through the ages: Ages 12 to 18 months
- Play through the ages: Ages 18 to 24 months