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What to expect - The toddler years (book review)

Updated on November 21, 2009

A book that I have referred to often over the past nine years is What To Expect the Toddler Years. This book, written in 1994, by Arlene Eisenberg, Heidi Murkoff, and Sandee Hathaway is full of information to help any parent get through the toddler years.

What To Expect the Toddler Years is broken up into four parts. The first part takes you through the second and third years - month by month. Each chapter details what your toddler may be doing now, what you can expect at any routine doctor visits, what you may be concerned about, what is important for you to know, and what is important for your toddler to know. These chapters cover a wide range of things that are typical of a child that age.

These include helping your child learn to talk, fridge opening, a change in eating habits, napping problems, jealousy, hair pulling, dealing with tantrums, showing affection, packing for travels, lactose intolerance, chores, fear of the dark, and much, much more. The question and answer format is very real and easy to read. The index in the back helps you quickly find exactly what you are looking for.

Part two is about toddler care, health and safety. These chapters cover things such as avoiding illnesses, immunizations, dressing tips, weight concerns, potty training, minor injuries and illnesses, special needs children and feeding your toddler. There are so many things covered here, including caring for your toddler's hair, pierced ears, common teeth and mouth problems, rejection of a favorite food, choking risks, indoor pest control, and a safe place to play.

Part three covers the toddler in the family. These chapters talk about the toddler as a sibling, parenting the toddler and when other people care for your toddler. There is a lot of good information here about how to handle every day stresses around your toddler (traveling, single parenting, holidays, etc.), sharing with other children (from toys to rooms), and babysitters.

Part four covers healthy recipes for toddlers, common home remedies, common illnesses, height and weight charts, charts for filling out your child's health history and an index. At this age a child can't tell you very well if something is wrong or even what hurts. Being able to look up the symptoms and possible illnesses helped us figure out if the illness was just a simple virus, an infection, or possibly more. Of course it can't totally diagnose an illness, however it can help a parent to decide whether they should see the doctor at all, make a late night run to the ER or just make an appointment in the morning.

What To Expect the Toddler Years is 904 pages full of great information about toddlers. I have loved being able to review, by month, where my toddler is at and where he should be. This is very helpful for a parent (especially a first time parent) to figure out if their toddler is developing normally. I highly recommend this book to all parents of young children.


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    • profile image


      10 years ago

      I only got to browse it from a copy at the library but it definitely has some great info ... i'll probably borrow it a lot over the next few years :)

    • raphanius profile image


      10 years ago from Derbyshire, UK

      I bought 'what to expect the first year' when i was expecting my son (now 6) and bought this book soon after. They are both without question the best books written on the subject of baby and toddler care. Great hub.

    • Aman deep Garg profile image

      Aman deep Garg 

      10 years ago

      Nice hub,enjoyed reading it.

    • MrMarmalade profile image


      10 years ago from Sydney

      Even the grandchildren are too old.

      I am too old to give it a lot of thought. In fact the thought of little children exhausts us.

      Thank you

    • Terri Paajanen profile image

      Terri Wilson 

      10 years ago from someplace in Canada

      I loved several of the books in this series. They are all great books. :) Only after my daughter passed 3 years old did they finally get packed up.


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