When do toddlers understand 'tomorrow' as a concept?

(13 Posts)
karigan Wed 24-Aug-16 17:49:55

Just that really. My (almost) 2 year old frequently asks about her Grandma coming but if I respond 'yes/yes soon' then she clearly expects it to happen imminently. I know 2 is far too young to understand 'tomorrow' as a concept but could anyone with older toddlers give me a rough idea of when their children started to understand.

InTheDessert Wed 24-Aug-16 17:56:00

"after you've had a sleep and breakfast" is easier than tomorrow, ime. But not for ages, when it's something exciting like Grandma!!!

Justwanttoweeinpeace Wed 24-Aug-16 17:59:57

DS understood the concept of one or two sleeps a bit after he was two and a half. But any more than that or anything too exciting and all bets are off.

Find it easiest not to mention that something is happening until it's about twenty minutes before the big event.

mrsmugoo Wed 24-Aug-16 18:04:36

Yes I usually say in the morning when you wake up rather than tomorrow.

I've been trying to teach my 2.6 year old the days of the week in relation to what we do on those days E.g.

Monday = playgroup
Tues/wed/ thurs = nursery
Friday = we see grandma
Saturday & Sunday = it's the weekend, daddy stays home, special treat breakfast etc...

BrianCoxReborn Wed 24-Aug-16 18:08:25

I started with DS (now 3) saying to him,

"We go to sleep tonight and then when we wake up and it's breakfast time, that's when Daddy comes to visit"

His dad sees him on a Sunday and Tuesday so he's always asking when Daddy is coming.

We're now up to counting how many sleeps. I try to avoid or distract if it's anything more than 2 or 3 sleep a (because that's beyond his grasp and upsets him)

karigan Wed 24-Aug-16 18:09:45

Thanks all. smile Will start trying 'after you've had a sleep'

Yes I've found I have to leave it until just minutes before as she gets so excited. (She's taken to bouncing up and down on the sofa whilst looking out of the window for her Grandma's car!)

Cranb0rne Wed 24-Aug-16 20:45:13

My toddler is 3 years 5 months and has really grasped this concept in the last few months. He is now familiar with some of the days of the week too, like he knows he goes to nursery on a Wednesday and Friday and that daddy is home all day at the weekend.

purpleme12 Wed 24-Aug-16 22:27:42

I'd say round about 2 and a half or a bit after that - going by my little girl anyway

skankingpiglet Wed 24-Aug-16 22:28:53

DD1 is 2.2yo. I say "tomorrow you are doing X" but will clarify with "so after sleep time we will get dressed, have breakfast, then do X". She seems to get it as she'll often say "wait X" (eg wait zoo) to me, then when she wakes up will remind me of what we're doing (DD [and] Mummy go zoo). I don't know if she understands just from the use of 'tomorrow' yet, but she certainly understands it not being immediate, and the things that need to happen first (and will doggedly remember what fun thing you promised was, so once it's mentioned it's either happening or there's an almighty strop).
As with PPs I'm trying to teach days of the week too, so will also often say "Tomorrow is Thursday, do you remember what we do on Thursdays?.... We do X. So sleep first, then X".

beginnersewer Thu 25-Aug-16 12:14:14

I'm fairly sure mine understands 'tomorrow' at 2.5, but it's hard to be 100% certain he's not just repeating the word back to me because he likes the sound of it.
He definitely understands 'later'.
He knows that he hears the church bells on Sunday.

KiteCutter Fri 26-Aug-16 10:45:15

If she can count then so many "sleeps" is a common way to start as they are definitive. Once that is established you can move onto days of the week and what happens on those days. Just be aware you'll be asked "how many sleeps" a lot!

coldcanary Fri 26-Aug-16 10:47:06

We do how many sleeps as well, it seems to work quite quickly. Bloody annoying near Christmas and birthdays though! grin

MrsJayy Fri 26-Aug-16 10:50:53

Honestly not till they are about 6 do they start getting it, we are all adults in our house now but how many sleeps is a running family joke. You just need to do it in terms pps have suggested after sleep breakfast etc

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