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Stages of Childhood


During the second and the third year of life the child makes a slow but important shift from a dependent infant to an independent individual. The toddler can move around easily, communicate more clearly, and has a sense of identity as a separate person with specific characteristics. The child can also interact more fully and successfully with playmates, be empathic toward other people, and show early signs of moral development. However, increased independence and newfound skills are not accompanied by impulse control. Toddlerhood is the period of the terrible twos. That is, the no-saying, newly oppositional toddlers now want to do things for themselves. Parents experience many conflicts with children at this age because they must limit the child, not only to teach impulse control, but also for the child's own survival (Bee 1998).

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Marriage and Family EncyclopediaPregnancy & ParenthoodStages of Childhood - Adolescence, Infancy, Middle Childhood, Toddlerhood - PRESCHOOL