The development of your child will begin to explode between the ages of 12 and 18 months. This is an exciting time for parents, who will watch their baby start to grow up in front of their eyes and become more like a young kid than a baby every single day.
Here’s a quick overview of some of the biggest milestones that usually occur in child development between 12 and 18 months. Phoenix, AZ parents should watch for the following:
- First steps: This is the one parents are likely to be the most excited for. It’s a gradual process for babies to learn how to walk, but once they’ve taken their first steps, you’ll be amazed at how quickly they get their feet under them. In general, it will start with the child pulling themselves up against furniture and cruising along it, but soon they’ll be able to pull themselves up to a standing position in the middle of the floor. Cruising typically starts around nine or 10 months, but independent steps usually don’t occur until after the child has turned one, and normally not until around 14 months. Be sure to encourage your child and lend a helping hand when needed!
- Using a cup: Teaching a child to drink from a cup is a challenge, but it will help your child to improve their motor skills and to master the use of their mouth muscles. Around 16 to 17 months, most toddlers will have the motor skills necessary to start drinking from an open cup. Children should be fully off bottles by 18 months of age and moving on to sippy cups and open cups.
- Understanding instructions: Children typically begin to understand simple instructions and directions by the time they’re a year old. The best way to encourage the development of this skill in a child is to use words and directions a lot, and to make language as clear and descriptive as possible. Make sure to use a lot of repetition so the child associates words with their meanings and the actions you’re performing. Name objects when you see them, and give a running commentary of what you and the child are doing while you’re doing it. It might feel strange in the moment, but it goes a long way toward building an understanding in the child.
- Moving objects and toys: As babies develop greater coordination and motor skills, they will really begin to enjoy playing with toys and objects. These skills will develop a lot between the ages of 12 and 18 months. They will begin enjoying scribbling with crayons, and start playing with toys and pulling tabs and flaps. You can help your child develop these skills by handing them all kinds of different objects of different sizes, shapes and textures that they are able to play with. This will help them build strength and dexterity.
For more information about the various child developmental milestones you can expect your toddler to hit between 12 and 18 months, contact our daycare center in Phoenix, AZ today.