Differences Amoung Toddler Boys vs Girls

There are various differences between girls and boys which become more noticeable in the toddler years. Some of these are innate physical differences to do with the growth of the body, or the development of the brain and ability for speech etc. Other differences are learned differences, like what colours or toys are favoured, with socialization playing a role in what the toddler likes, accepts, wants etc.

Speech development

Girls like speech and human voices and will become engaged when a voice speaks although boys and girls react the same to non-verbal noises, like rattles. Their love for language means that girls are often more advanced in their speech development compared to boys and will talk sooner and acquire vocabulary faster and start making complex sentences earlier. The connections in the girls brain help this acquisition of language.

Gross motor skills

As infants boys move a lot more than girls and in the toddler years they also tend to be more active (and anecdotally sustain more injuries) although it is during preschool years the difference between girls and boys really accelerates.

Fine motor skills

Girls are generally better at fine motor skills like using utensils, doing button, playing with toys that need manipulation and they write sooner and neater than boys.

Emotional development

Boys experience emotions just as girls although may have a harder time soothing themselves and can experience greater frustration (increased heart rate etc.) when the normal irritations associated with the toddler years arise. Boys also show less fear and physiologically are not startled by loud noises while girls are. Girls will also slow down when parent’s express fear over something while boys will carry on.

Social development

Girls love communication, eye contact and talking thriving on it from infancy. They are great mimickers especially when it involves caring acts for other people, like rocking a baby. They are social creatures. Boys also thrive on interaction but do not mimic so many caring gestures instead in the toddler years boys are interested in team work and groups.


As infants and toddlers boys like motion, especially mechanical motion. They are adept at keeping track of moving objects and are slightly ahead of girls in figuring out where a rolling ball will go. By the toddler years this love for motion will be evident in the types of toys that boys like with balls, cars and moving models particularly intriguing and interesting the boy.

Toilet training

During toddler years girls are generally toilet trained earlier than boys. Manufacturers of nappies have also recognized that physical differences begin to emerge in the toddler years. Nappies are now specifically designed for each gender with boys have a surge layer placed at the front of the nappy and girls having it lower down to account for the gender differences (e.g. the Huggies range).

There are many differences between girls and boys. Read more about these and others at grandparents.about.com to find what the researchers have found and what parents have experienced.