Games to Play with your Todder (12 to 16 months)

Toy Coming to life

A good way to help your child to develop their language skills is to pretend your child’s favorite teddy or doll is real. Make him walk, go to bed, or dance across the room. Sit  him at the table for dinner and put a bib on him. Talk  about what you’re doing and this will help your toddler with learning to talk. Act out happy and sad times, too. This will help your child to learn about feelings and emotions as she’s developing her imagination.

Push me, Pull You

A pushing and pulling game occurrs when your toddler is pulling herself up and trying to walk. You can help her with this practice by using a moveable object such as a child-size chair or plastic stacking box filled with soft toys.  As your child holds the edges for support, you can hold the other side and keep it steady. Slowly pull the box toward you to encourage her to step forward. She will soon start to push while you gently pull. This will build up her confidence for the day she finally walks on her own.

Patty-Cake

Although your toddler can hold her hands open, it  may be a while before she claps independently. Clap them together for her or let her hold your hands while you pat them together. Sit her facing you on the floor or on your lap, and sing clapping songs like patty-cake. These will boost her language skills as well as her hand-eye coordination.

Hide- and -Seek

 Your toddler will love to play simple games of hide-and-seek just as much as she used to play peek-a-boo as a baby. This is fun to go first thing in the morning. Take turns hiding under the bed sheets, then at bath time, use a big towel. For extra fun and giggles, gently poke her as she hides. Say things like,  “Hmm, is this a leg? Or is it an arm?”  This will help teach your toddler that just because she can’t see something, doesn’t mean it isn’t there.  While she’s wrapped up in the towel, carry her into another room. She’ll be delighted when she pops her head out only to discover she’s in a new spot!

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