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Your toddler’s development: 18 months

This month, you may notice your 18-month-old is:

  • Saying at least 15-20 words
  • Self-feeding with a spoon
  • Talking more clearly
  • Taking off an article of clothing alone
  • Showing signs of wanting to potty train

Understanding two-part directions

At a year and a half, toddlers are more verbal and sociable than ever before. It’s also a little more challenging to keep them entertained. You need to provide your toddler with a full range of age appropriate playthings. Child-size tables and chairs are perfect for puzzles, tea parties, colouring, etc.

Nutritional tips

Allowing your child to feed themselves with a little spoon or fork is an important stage in their growing independence. By using their own utensils they will be able to make their own serving size and at the same time eat at their own pace. By giving them their own spoon and fork, you give them a sense of responsibility and eventually they’ll be able to serve themselves

Toddler tantrums

Tantrums are likely to happen any day soon (if not already!) because your toddler doesn’t have the breadth of thought and speech to clearly explain what they want. Instead it is more likely that your toddler will throw a big strop, wriggling and kicking as you try to get his shoes on.

Tantrums are usually preceded by frustration of some kind, because you are trying to get him to do something he doesn’t want to do, he’s unable to do something he wants to do or is in someway prevented from doing what he wants. As difficult and trying as it can be, try to approach things in an understanding and patient way. Empathy is a really successful way of avoiding full-blown tantrums. If the tantrum is extreme, make sure your child is unable to hit off anything that may injure him.

Fun activities

Rhythm rambles! Sit in a comfortable place with your toddler, and give them two ‘rhythm sticks’ (basically, any wooden items you like so long as there are two the same, such as two wooden spoons). Start tapping a simple rhythm and encourage your toddler to copy you.
An easy start is to tap and say “tap, tap” each time. When they have the hang of it, change the rhythm and try tapping fast, tapping slow, loud and soft, etc.

Read on for what to expect in the coming months: 19 months/20 months/21 months/22 months/23 months/24 months


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