Personal Care Routines (Patterns)
Infants and toddlers learn to anticipate and form expectations based on their everyday experiences with people, objects, daily routines, and their environment.
Classification refers to the ability of infants and toddlers to make meaning of their world by grouping and categorizing the attributes of the objects and people they encounter.
You may have noticed this skill when watching infant and adult interactions, how the child happily interacts with a familiar adult and is reserved, yet interested in an unfamiliar person. You may have watched a toddler create groups of objects based on a particular attribute.
A child’s daily routine builds an understanding of relationships and patterns. These routines foster children’s abilities to anticipate what will come next. Over time, infants transition from being primarily passive participants in their personal care routines to involved toddlers who have mastered the steps and order of their daily routines and can self-initiate their own care either independently or with adult support.
A toddler who wakes up and puts on socks and shoes is demonstrating that they understand some of the steps involved in their personal care routine.