Psychology is such an interesting field.
Apparently researchers have found that toddlers don't seem to apply lessons in anticipation, but rather they do it in hindsight. Basically, telling a toddler to do something for a hypothetical situation that the toddler isn't already in will not seem to stick. However, when the toddler is later in that situation, the toddler will be able to remember what he has learned.
The development of the human mind is so amazing.