Developmental Milestones: 12 - 18 months
Your baby has entered the world of toddlerhood - a time of significant emotional, social, and cognitive development!
Let's look at the main developmental milestones for 12 to 18 months.
- Their engineering skills are on show as they’re now able to build towers using two blocks, and knock them down.
- Their independence is growing and they can help get undressed, put on their own socks and a hat on their head (and can also remove them).
- They can stand and walk without help and pick up an object from the floor without tumbling over.
- Careful on the stairs as they may be scooting down on their bottom and crawling up to get to their destination.
- Your toddlers are getting better with their aim and can now feed themselves using a spoon (with some spilling) and drink from their cup (again, with some spilling). They may also insist on holding their own spoon or toothbrush!
- As their fine motor skills are developing, they’re able to hold onto a crayon or a marker and scribble with their whole hand (watch out for your walls) and grasp small objects with their fingertips.
- Their vocab has increased and they’re graduating onto some real words in and amongst the babble, including “mommy” and “daddy” as well as being able to name a few familiar objects such as “dog” and “ball”.
- By 18 months, they’ll be able to say 10-20 words and put two words together to form a sentence like ‘all gone” or “Daddy go?”
- Your toddler’s comprehension is progressing fast, and they’ll point at familiar objects when you name them, like “head”, “mommy”, and “cat”. They can even follow short, simple instructions such as “come here”
- At this age, they'll increasingly use body language to communicate, such as pointing to things they want and nodding and shaking their head for “yes and “no”.
- They’ll make frequent eye contact and give you hugs but don’t be alarmed if they start having temper tantrums – this will change as they start to develop language skills and learn to regulate their emotions.
- This is the age that toddlers start to show emotion and empathy. You’ll notice that they may suffer from separation anxiety when apart from you (this generally peaks at around 18 months) and may get attached to a stuffed toy or a security blanket. (our advice: buy more than one of their favorite toy/blankie - a lost blankie/toy, never ends well!)
- They'll show affection to people they're familiar with and they may be scared of strangers.
- They'll have started to show an understanding of some colors and shapes.
The Best Activities for Kids: Age 12 to 18 months
Help her develop her imagination and creativity, as well as a love for reading by regularly reading her picture books. Take turns pointing to pictures in her book and ask her what they are. Let her turn the pages of the book herself, and together, name everyday objects that she points at to help her increase her vocabulary. If there are animals in the book, teach her the sounds they make and encourage her to copy. Listen as she tries to talk and encourage her to use her words to speak (instead of just pointing).
Encourage him to use his hands by playing with blocks and shape sorters. Play interactive games and songs with actions (like “Itsy Bitsy Spider” and “Patty-cake”) and give him a crayon and let him express his artistic talents as he scribbles away. Roll a ball to him and encourage him to roll it back. Let him bang on the back of a pan with a wooden spoon to create music. Don’t forget to praise his attempts and give him plenty of cuddles and kisses to keep him feeling loved and secure!
Give Her Some (Supervised) Freedom
Try and give her space to let her move about – let her walk and climb and run around to help her physical development and gross motor skills as well as to build up her self-confidence. Give your toddler a cup or toothbrush to hold and let her try to use them for herself – a great way to support her newfound need for independence.
Toddlers can improve their hand-eye coordination, dexterity, and motor control as they play and build using just a couple of blocks to start (requires supervision). As they get older, they’ll be able to build bigger towers and use the colors and letters to form patterns and it introduces the letters of the alphabet, reading, and writing in a fun way!
Your toddler will enjoy trying to stack the jumbo pegs on top of each other as they practice their fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination. As they get older, they'll have fun using this Montessori set for bigger builds, color recognition, and learning basic math skills such as counting, adding, subtraction, and graphing.
The egg shapes are great for kids 12 months + who now have an understanding of some colors and shapes. With 6 different colors and shapes to choose from, they'll improve your toddlers' hand-eye coordination, hand dexterity, and color recognition as they match the shapes and colors and try to piece them together. As they get older, they can use the eggs for matching games, shape learning, and color sorting.
Other Milestones you might want to look at:
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: Birth to 4 months old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 4 to 8 months old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 8 to 12 months old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 18 months to 2 years old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 2 to 3 years old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 3 to 4 years old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 4 to 5 years old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 5 to 6 years old
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- Tags: baby development, child development, developmental milestones, fine motor skills, gross motor development, language development, toddlers