tod·​dle ˈtä-dᵊl How to pronounce toddle (audio)
toddled; toddling ˈtäd-liŋ How to pronounce toddle (audio)

intransitive verb

: to walk with short tottering steps in the manner of a young child
: to take a stroll : saunter
toddle noun

Examples of toddle in a Sentence

The little boy toddled across the room. I toddled off to the pub for a pint. She toddled off to bed.
Recent Examples on the Web Last month, the singer posted an adorable Instagram video of the siblings toddling down the street on the Fourth of July. Erin Clack, Peoplemag, 7 Aug. 2023 They’re used to the spotlight, too: Each of them makes frequent appearances on the NWSL social media feeds, and are often seen toddling around the field after league games. USA TODAY, 31 July 2023 Roughly three million years ago, tiny penguins toddled around New Zealand, according to a new study. Sarah Kuta, Smithsonian Magazine, 10 July 2023 Or somewhere out on the shore of Lake Washington, where children toddle at the water’s edge. USA Today, 26 June 2023 Why, then, do parents celebrate when their would-be toddler first begins to toddle? David P. Barash, WSJ, 16 June 2021 And with 14 existing soundstage facilities within city limits, Chicago is no toddling town. Brent Simon, Variety, 8 Mar. 2023 Over the course of 20 minutes, most of the chicks hesitantly toddled over to the end of the box with the upward-moving ball, confirming what scientists suspected: Even without any previous visual experiences, chicks are attracted to objects moving against gravity. Teresa Nowakowski, Smithsonian Magazine, 7 Mar. 2023 One little boy spent much of the evening toddling about, his eyes firmly fixed on the ever-changing images at his tiny feet. Deborah Martin, San Antonio Express-News, 28 Feb. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'toddle.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


origin unknown

First Known Use

circa 1600, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of toddle was circa 1600

Dictionary Entries Near toddle

Cite this Entry

“Toddle.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


tod·​dle ˈtäd-ᵊl How to pronounce toddle (audio)
toddled; toddling ˈtäd-liŋ How to pronounce toddle (audio)
: to walk with short unsteady steps like a young child
toddle noun
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!