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Emotional Development, Ages 2 to 5 Years

Overview

Emotional growth is a process of developing feelings and learning how to handle them in the right way. Sadness, fear, anger, and happiness are our most common feelings. Every child has emotional needs. Meeting those needs is one of the most important things you will do as a parent or caregiver.

Between the ages of 2 and 5, children slowly learn how to manage their feelings. For example, a toddler may get mad and have a tantrum if a toy is taken away. As the child matures emotionally, they will learn to express anger in other ways.

Young children also start to develop moral emotions. They feel ashamed or guilty when they do something wrong. When bad things happen, young children may feel responsible for no logical reason. Reassure your child by showing affection and love along with talking about feelings. Children don't always know the words to explain how they feel.

Credits

Current as of: August 3, 2022

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
John Pope MD - Pediatrics
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Louis Pellegrino MD - Developmental Pediatrics

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