21 months old

Experts used to discourage official swimming lessons for toddlers under the age of four. The reason for that is they often give a false sense of security; after all, few children under that age have the muscle strength to keep themselves afloat. But now experts encourage informal swimming programs to get toddlers comfortable around water -- and to teach them its dangers. So grab your suit and some floaties, mama!

your toddler at 21 months
  • Playtime is even more entertaining as you start seeing your tot’s personal interests shine through in her toy and game choices.
  • Little Jenny may like crashing toy trucks and little Joey may digs your shiny pink heels. It’s normal for gender stereotypes to blur in the name of good, clean fun.
  • Be warned that the wee one may find it “fun” to stick small objects -- like raisins or beads -- in her nose, ears, or other orifices.


  • toddler know-how at 21 months

    Drape a large piece of fabric over a card table, cut out a “door,” and you’ve got an instant -- and cheap -- indoor playhouse. If you feel like getting fancy, decorate the “house” with windows and other details.



    Reminder: Medical info on The Bump is FYI only and doesn't replace a visit to a medical professional.