The 12-18 month stage is one of the most important and exciting times in a toddler's life! During this phase, toddlers are learning to walk and are delighted with their newly found freedom! However, they still need your encouragement, attention, and assistance as they reach milestones and try new things. Social skills further develop by 14-18 months as toddlers sometimes play together cooperatively, but more often they play side by side with different toys. Patty-cake becomes a popular pastime along with stacking blocks, waving, and learning to use a spoon as their fine motor skills continue to develop. By 18 months, a toddler's gross motor skills improve as well as she begins to run, jump, and climb. Vocabulary also expands during this stage. Parents are overjoyed when they hear their little one utter "Mama" and "Dada" for the very first time!
At this stage, your toddler may also:
- Move from baby babble to using recognizable words and simple two word phrases
- Find pleasure in social interactions with other people
- Drink from a child-sized cup
- Perform an action intentionally that was formerly done by accident such as pushing a certain button to make a certain noise
- Demonstrate preference towards the right or left hand