Sunday, August 29, 2010

Baby Development (12th to 16th Months)

By now, your toddler is walking. As she becomes more energetic and develops wonderful gross motor skills, you will observe a change in her body -- she gains weight at a slower pace and no longer looks chubby. Her language has developed and she is able to express herself. Her fine and gross motor skills are developing. She is able to follow basic instructions and can feed herself using her fingers. She recognizes herself and her family members by their names.

How can you help?
  • Help her build her vocabulary. Often, her first words (apart from mama and papa) are connected to her interests and surroundings. E.g. dog, car, book, bird, kite, etc. You may want to help her know these by names.
  • You can help her develop her motor skills. When she is involved in eating, try offering her a spoon. If she wants you to read her a book, ask her to pick it up for you. She will have a huge sense of achievement when she sees you smile and say ‘thank you’.
  • While reading, be selective, persistent, creative, interactive and most important expressive. She will enjoy looking at colorful pictures in the books you read to her.
  • Photographs are a great way to help her recognize her family, friends, and herself as an individual. Children love looking at pictures in a photo album. Try doing this activity weekly, and ask questions about the people in the pictures.
  • She may be a picky eater. Help her build up a taste for natural foods, rather than for artificial flavors.
  • This may be a "NO-NO" age. She may say "no" to almost every question that you ask her. Try and give her choices "What do you want to drink - milk or juice?" Let her feel in control, though in reality, whatever option that she may select, would be favorable to you. Be clear and don't offer choices when there really aren't any.
  • A beautiful way to control her unlimited energy is to turn up the volume of the music system and ask her to dance.
  • Engage her in household tasks. She'll be happy to imitate your behavior, help you around the house, and she may start acting responsible. Pick up simple tasks like folding clothes, sweeping, or setting the table and let her help you out.
It is normal for toddlers to be naughty. There's no need to punish but it's important for you to be strict in your responses.

And in the end, love her unconditionally.

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