2 Year Old

Below is a list of developmental milestones that children typically reach at the end of 2 years of age. Review them with your child’s healthcare professional and talk about what to expect next.

Movement & Physical Development

  • Stands on tiptoe 
  • Kicks a ball
  • Begins to run 
  • Climbs onto and down from furniture without help 
  • Walks up and down stairs holding on 
  • Throws ball overhand

Social & Emotional

  • • Smiles spontaneously, particularly at people • Likes to play with people • Copies some movements and facial expressions – smiling and frowningCopies others, especially adults and older children 
  • Gets excited when with other children o Shows more and more independence 
  • Shows defiant behavior (doing what he has been told not to) 
  • Plays mainly beside other children, but is beginning to include other children, such as in chase games


  • Finds things even when hidden under two or three covers 
  • Begins to sort shapes and colors 
  • Completes sentences and rhymes in familiar books 
  • Plays simple make-believe games 
  • Builds towers of 4 or more blocks 
  • Might use one hand more than the other 
  • Follows two-step instructions such as “Pick up your shoes and put them in the closet.” 
  • Names items in a picture book such as a cat, bird, or dog


  • Points to things or pictures when they are named 
  • Knows names of familiar people and body parts 
  • Says sentences with 2 to 4 words o Follows simple instructions 
  • Repeats words overheard in conversation 
  • Points to things in a book

What You Can Do With Your 2-Year-Old

You can help your child learn and grow. Talk, read, sing, and play together every day. Below are some activities to enjoy with your 2-year-old child today. 


Ask For Help if Your Child...

  • Doesn’t use 2-word phrases (for example, “drink milk”) 
  • Doesn’t know what to do with common things, like a brush, phone, fork, spoon 
  • Doesn’t copy actions and words 
  • Doesn’t follow simple instructions 
  • Doesn’t walk steadily 
  • Loses skills they once had
Tell your healthcare provider if you notice any of these signs of possible developmental delay for this age. You can also talk with someone in your community who is familiar with services for young children in your area. Try the FCWN Navigator by emailing [email protected] or calling 403-995-2706.