Single motherhood






Hi, I'm a Kenyan-born, Colorado-based single mom to twins Hodari and Milambu. I turned the challenges of single motherhood into a thriving YouTube community and blog. Here, I offer support and practical advice on parenting, lifestyle, and more. Let's navigate life's complexities together!


more about me

single motherhood





Milo and Dario are now 3 yrs old and they’re becoming more and more independent as they grow. I love seeing them doing things for themselves as they learn how to navigate this world but it hasn’t always been this way.

Since they were little, I took steps to ensure that they’d be more independent. I let them feed themselves at 1 and I worked hard to set up an environment that would allow them to be more independent. Now, I get so proud when they come to me fully dressed or when I see them pour out their own cereal and set up the table to eat.

At 3 years old, they love doing things by themselves without my assistance. It gives them a sense of responsibility and helps them feel in control. We all know what it’s like to feel out of control in our own lives. It’s important to provide your toddler with opportunities to be independent so that they can learn how to navigate this world.

Steps You Can Take To Help Your Toddler Be More Independent

Here are a few things you can do to help your toddler be more independent around the home. These all look different in each household, so decide what works for you and your family.

1. Set Up An Environment that Promotes Independence

Set up your home in a way that allows your child to be more independent by creating spaces that they can use without your assistance.

Here are other ways you can create spaces that promote independence:

  1. Have an easily accessible drawer for them to grab their utensils whenever they need them.
  2. Create a potty station that includes books, wipes and other items they may need while potty training.
  3. Set up a playroom that allows them to play independently.

Setting the environment makes it easy for your toddler to do things by themselves without constantly asking you for things. It’s not bad for toddlers to ask us for things but if you can create a space where they can get whatever they need, that allows them to make their own decisions.

2. Use Open-Ended Toys

Open-ended toys are toys that can be played with in multiple ways. These toys are more engaging because they allow your child to be creative and think outside the box as opposed to toys that do everything for the child.

Open-ended toys allow your child to be more independent because they don’t need any guidance on how to play with them. There is no right or wrong way to play with open-ended toys so this opens up the possibility to use them in many ways.

Since open-ended toys rely on the child’s imagination, they can be played with for hours without any boredom. And your child feels control in that environment because they decide what the game is. This promotes critical thinking and problem-solving skills and helps your toddler be confident in their decision-making.

Here are some of our favorite open-ended toys.

3. Give them Age Appropriate Chores

Performing household tasks with toddlers can be challenging but it’s a great way to help them learn and also bond with them. It also shows your confidence in them and helps them know that you consider them a valuable part of the family. Here are some chores your toddler can help with:

  • Put away their toys when done playing
  • Water plants or feed the pet
  • Help with laundry (moving clothes from the washing machine to the dryer)
  • Set the table and take away their dishes when done

Even if they don’t do all the chores or don’t do them regularly, having them in place and enforcing them will help your toddler be more independent.


The Best Accessories for Your Ikea Play Kitchen

For kids, the Ikea Play Kitchen is a great pretend play toy. Its modern design and functionality allow for a lot of imaginative play.

4. Offer them choices 

At 2, I realized that my kids wanted to start making some of their own choices so I started allowing them to pick what clothes they want to wear. I would offer them two shirts to see what they would select and now at 3yrs old, they pick their own outfits and can confidently dress themselves.

Offering choices allows your child to feel in control of their own decisions and develops the confidence to tackle different situations.

Here are some ways you can offer choices to your toddler:

  1. Let them pick what to wear. You can hold up two outfits and have them select which one they want. The goal is to make the choice simple, don’t give them too many choices otherwise, they’ll get overwhelmed.
  2. Ask them what food they’d like. If your toddler is picky, you can offer a choice on what food or snack they prefer and if you are able to accommodate that choice then make it happen.
  3. During bedtime, you can ask them to pick a book to read. Bedtime can be hard with toddlers but allowing them some independence can help things go smoothly. 

5. Have a Routine In Place

Routines help toddlers understand what’s expected and the schedule that will be followed. It’s hard having a routine when your kids spend time in different households but you can still work to create a routine that they can follow when they’re with you.

Create a schedule so that they know what to expect. This schedule could include different activities they’ll be doing that day and the times. Make it visual so they can recognize the different activities and get excited about them.

6. Allow them to struggle and make mistakes

It can be hard to stand back and let your kid learn on their own. It’s so easy to want to correct them when they make a mistake or don’t do the activity the exact way it should be done, but mistakes are how they learn.

So, unless their safety is at stake, give your child the freedom to make mistakes as they learn.

Final Thoughts

Helping your toddler be more independent can be a bit challenging because they’ll do things you never expected them to do but with patience, you can help them learn what is acceptable and what behaviors aren’t.

Help Your Toddler Be More Independent: 6 Steps to follow

independent toddler

Apr 27, 2022

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

@ FAITH MATINI 2021 All Rights Reserved


Faith Matini is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

error: Content is protected !!