Observe them once, they are helpless infants, entirely dependent upon you. Then comes a day when they toddle away from you, their small footsteps filled with curiosity and determination. They are exploring their surroundings, showing an eagerness to learn and replicate what they see. There's no denying; your little ones are not so little anymore.
Indeed, it is an incredible journey of growth that they embark upon in their first 18 months. However, if you are curious about aiding their development further, there are numerous options to assist. The following activities can fuel your 1.5-year-old's development while ensuring that they have a lot of fun.
Milestones for 18-month-olds
Key developmental indicators refer to the emotional and physical abilities that babies and toddlers acquire. These milestones give parents a clear indication of how their child is growing, learning, and how they compare to other kids their age.
Every child is unique; they experience and react to the world around them in their own beautiful way. Hence, their development speed varies. This means their acquisition of different skills and capabilities may not follow the same pace as other children. It is completely normal.
However, there are some typical milestones that many toddlers reach by the age of eighteen months. Here are a few of them:
Social and Emotional Skills
These skills might include moving away from close caregivers to venture out on their own, showing you things they are interested in, and even helping themselves during dressing up by pushing an arm through a sleeve.
Language and Communication Skills
Your toddler might now attempt to enunciate more than three words other than 'mama' or 'dada'. They might also start following one-step instructions without gestures.
At this age, toddlers may begin to imitate you doing simple household chores and play with toys in a straightforward manner, like perhaps pushing a toy car.
Gross and Fine Motor Skills
They start walking unassisted, use their fingers for self-feeding, and even try to control a spoon for eating. Climbing on and off a chair or a couch without any help is also something they might do.
Activities for 18-month-olds
There are various activities that you can enjoy with your toddler that can aid in improving their different skills. Here are some of them:
Build a Tower and Knock It Down
With simple blocks, encourage your toddler to build a tower. Gradually, add onto the challenge by increasing the blocks. Allow your child to knock it down and then restart. Such activities help in enhancing their motoring skills.
Finger Play Sing-Along
Introduce your toddler to popular children's rhymes. Sing along with them, teaching them hand movements and gestures that align with the rhythm of the songs. This will help in language development and fine-tuning of motor skills.
Clean Up, Clean Up
Simplify household chores and involve your toddler. Cleaning with mops or dusters can progress their gross motor skills. Moreover, talking to them during the activity can improve their language-learning abilities.
Pretend play activities using dolls, bowls, and spoons can teach small tasks of daily life. Simultaneously, it also enhances social-emotional development.
Blow the Snowballs
This fun game involves blowing cotton balls off the table. This activity helps strengthen the muscles around the toddler's mouth, preparing them for more diverse speech in the future.
Engaging your toddler in these activities will not only keep them occupied but will also add fun spaces where they can learn and grow. The progression in their skills will not just be worthwhile, but will also bring you joy and satisfaction as a parent.