Development and Characteristics of a 19-20 Month Old Child

Parenting September 14, 2009 Print Friendly and PDF

Parenting Tips for Your 19-20 Month Old Toddler



How I Grow

  • I explore a lot.
  • I may be able to kick a large ball.
  • I like being independent, but sometimes I want to act like a baby.
  • I can run without falling too often.
  • I can stand on either foot holding on.
  • I still like to climb on things.
  • I don’t know about safety, so I count on you to keep thinks safe for me.

How I Talk

  • I’m very good at saying “no.”
  • I love to name things.
  • I can follow simple directions.
  • I like to be read to.
  • I can say about 15 words.
  • I like to listen to nursery rhymes.
  • I ask a lot of questions, mostly by saying “why?” or “what’s that?” Be patient with me. I am just trying to learn.

What I Have Learned

  • I can pull the toilet paper way out.
  • I can put two pieces together to form a simple figure.
  • I’m beginning to know what things are for, like a hammer is for banging.
  • I can draw an up and down line pretty well.

How I Get Along with Others

  • I love cuddling.
  • I like to help you do simple things.
  • I’m still not very interested in other children.
  • Even when I’m with other children, I like to play alone.
  • I want to keep my toys to myself, and I may hide them so others can’t play with them.
  • I need time to get to know people; I’m afraid of some people.
  • I like to do things without adult help.
  • I may be friendlier with other children than adults.

What I Can Do

  • I can brush my own teeth.
  • Sometimes I will let you know when I’m going to have a bowel movement.
  • I can let you know when I need dry clothes.
  • I can feed myself pretty well.

Learn more about Your Toddler: 19-20 Months from Just In Time Parenting. You can also go to our Resource Links for additional information on child care and development.

Note to Parents: When reading this newsletter, remember: Every baby is different. Children may do things earlier or later than described here. This newsletter gives equal space and time to both sexes. If he or she is used, we are talking about all babies.
References: These materials were adapted by authors from Extension Just in Time Parenting Newsletters in California, Delaware, Georgia, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Tennessee, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, and Wisconsin.


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This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.