The Five Toddler Temperaments

Angel Toddler

The Angel Toddler was "good as gold" when she was a baby. Usually very social, this child is immediately comfortable in groups and can fit into most situations. She often develops language earlier than her peers or at least is clearer when making her needs known. When she wants something she can't have, it's fairly easy to distract her before her emotions escalate. And when she's really out of sorts, it's fairly easy to calm her before she gets to the tantrum stage. At play, she has a lot of staying power at a single task. This is a child who's easy and highly portable. Even when traveling, she can go with the flow and shift gears easily.


Watch Video: Taming Toddlers


Textbook Toddler

As in infancy, the Textbook Toddler is right on time with developmental milestones. You could say she does everything by the book. She's generally pleasant in social situations but can be shy at first with strangers. She's most comfortable in her own environment, but if outings are planned well, and you give her sufficient time and preparation, she won't have much trouble adapting to new surroundings. This is a child who loves routine and likes to know what's coming next.

Touchy Toddler

True to her baby self, the Touchy Toddler is sensitive and typically slow to adapt to new situations. She likes the world ordered and knowable. She hates to be interrupted when engrossed. For instance, if she's deeply involved with a toy or a puzzle and you ask her to stop, she gets upset and is likely to cry. It's this toddler who is often labeled "shy." It's true that a Touchy toddler may not do well in social gatherings, especially if she feels pushed, and she often has difficulty sharing. But if she's left to do things at her own pace, she can mature into a thoughtful, sensitive thinker, a child who weighs situations carefully and likes to ponder problems.

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