Congratulations! Your INFANT evolved into TODDLER!
June 10, 2015 11:57 AM   Subscribe

I've read several baby books that provide a comprehensive overview of the first year of an infant's life: development, basic care, etc. Can you recommend a book that covers the toddler years in a similar way?

Baby Metroid Baby is nearing his first birthday. In the past several months I've learned a lot about babies, and a lot of the books I've read (e.g. Your Baby's First Year) have helped me immensely. But those books stop at the twelve-month mark, and so does my knowledge. All I know about toddlers is that they walk, talk, and... are tiny satans who hate all grown-up rules and are hell-bent on the destruction of everything around them, I guess? I admit to being spooked by some of the tales I've heard.

Most of the previous AskMes I've browsed have focused on toddler discipline (oh god oh god oh god), and I'd like something more generalized that covers a bit of everything - development, activities, feeding, sleep, etc. The baby books I've liked are broken into chapters/sections by age range, so a similarly organized book would be especially good.

Recommendations for online resources are welcome, too, but I'd like a physical book to read in the tub after the kid's asleep!
posted by Metroid Baby to Human Relations (10 answers total) 23 users marked this as a favorite
I've been reading The New First Three Years of Life and it's definitely more generalized than just toddler discipline. It's a little bit old-school but I've been enjoying it as a big-picture look at what is going on developmentally and suggestions for particularly good activities based on that.

I'll be following this thread, though, for more good suggestions (and particularly ones that weren't originally written in 1980!).
posted by iminurmefi at 12:17 PM on June 10, 2015

I like the Louise Bates Ames/ Gesell Institute books, which go by age: Your One Year Old, Your Two Year Old: Terrible or Tender, Your Three Year Old: Friend or Enemy

They are mostly descriptive in the sense of "this is the behavior you're likely to see" and they mostly don't really address discipline or problem-solving strategies, which I actually thought was a big plus--I was interested in an overview of what normal development was like, and then went elsewhere for advice on specific issues. They are older books and occasionally have dated sections (and tend to assume traditional parenting roles for mother and father) but I think they're still useful. They also avoid fearmongering about raising your child WRONG!

You might also like What's Going on in There ? Which is much more about the neurological development of your child and is broken into sections by developmental system (hearing,vision,speech, motor, etc) rather than strictly by age but does give a nice, very evidence-based overview of development in the first 5 years.
posted by The Elusive Architeuthis at 12:18 PM on June 10, 2015 [4 favorites]

I really liked Toddler 411 for these years. It reads like a manual and is half mom advice and half doctor advice.
posted by gnutron at 1:26 PM on June 10, 2015

While I was initially skeptical, I have really been won over by Toddler 411.
posted by OmieWise at 1:59 PM on June 10, 2015

Seconding the Gesell Institute books. They are spot on.

And by the way, I adore toddlers. They are funny as hell, and it's insanely fascinating to watch them change and develop and learn.
posted by primate moon at 4:06 PM on June 10, 2015

Happiest Toddler on the Block.
posted by Kalmya at 6:20 PM on June 10, 2015

The Emotional Life of the Toddler is very good.
posted by aetg at 7:21 PM on June 10, 2015

This is very old (and I have to admit I prefer the 1978 edition to a newer one I've seen, mainly because of the mini-encyclopedia in the back) - but I very much liked Penelope Leach's Your Baby and Child from Birth to Age Five. There were things I disagreed with and/or questioned, but on the whole I got a lot out of it.
posted by you must supply a verb at 2:25 AM on June 11, 2015

This is not an answer per se but, this particular Breaking Cat News comic will provide (from my past experience) a sympathetic and humorous explanation of the transition from infant to toddler.
posted by digitalprimate at 2:43 AM on June 11, 2015 [1 favorite]

When my kid was about a year old I signed up for the BabyCenter Your Baby/Toddler This Week newsletters, and I quite like them. Now that Toddler McC is almost two and isn't developing so quickly, they're getting a little repetitive, but at the beginning they talked a lot about things like fine motor skills and walking and teeth. They're not particularly in-depth, but they do provide a very thorough overview.
posted by lollymccatburglar at 5:42 AM on June 11, 2015

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