Toddler Development: Your 15-month-old

Toddler Development: Your 15-month-old

Nerve-wracking times for parents as your wee one goes off into the world without a care for danger. This stage of toddler development is all about fearlessly moving and exploring. Your task is to keep your little one safe and sound and all loved up. If only we could have eyes in the back of our heads.

Oh, look how adorably your little one toddles off... into a busy street. This stage of toddler development is cause for many a parental heart attack.

Your sweet wee one is busy discovering the world with no sense of danger. Really, it's a big compliment to you: he doesn't know fear because he has not experienced pain.

But you might want to invest in some soft mats and foam tiles for your hard wooden or tiled flooring, and some calming essential oils for yourself!

Physical Development

If your busy explorer has been walking for while, now he will up the ante. It's all about escaping to go on a quest for discovery in this toddler development stage.

Be prepared for bursts of speed while out walking, and frantic antics to free himself from his high chair. He might also be trying to climb out of his cot, roll off the sofa, and hide inside cupboards and on shelves.

Now you know why furniture shops recommend you nail the book shelves to the wall!

Right now, it seems as if your little one is always on the move. He is climbing up stairs on hands and feet, or standing if you help him. He's dancing to the music you are playing, he might even be throwing balls!

Watch out, he still has no sense of direction, so those balls (and other toys...) could end up anywhere. So try to be more patient, his lack of aim is all part of toddler development.

It's not unusual if your walking toddler decides to go back to crawling for a little bit. Walking on two feet is tiring and unstable, so he might just decide to take a rest and do the bear walk.

Don't worry, soon enough he'll be back on his feet--and running as well!

In fine motor skills, he is starting to master the pincher grasp. This will allow him to begin scribbling with intent. This might also be a good moment to find a place up high to keep pencils and crayons, if you'd like to preserve the colour of your walls.

The pincher grasp will enable your toddler to eat less messily, although at first the difference doesn't seem that big! 

Continue reading to learn more about toddler development at 15 months. Next up is Cognitive and Social Development

Cognitive Development

Exciting times! Your little explorer is beginning to identify and point at body parts. He might even be able to say "boo boo" when he has stubbed his toes.

Singing "Head, shoulders, knees and toes" together will provide endless fun, as he tries to match his moves to the song. You might have to sing a little slowly the first few times. 

This really is a time of discovery, as your little one is also beginning to put name and object together. He might recognize the word for book or bottle or ball and be able to find them if placed near him.

Another lovely game to do during this toddler development stage is touching different surfaces, furry, soft, rough. Get yourself some lovely tactile books to explore, or use fabrics and textures you have around the home.

Be aware though, your little one also explores through tasting! The mouth is very sensitive, so it makes perfect sense that your toddler wants to stick everything inside to get a good feel. But it might not be very sanitary.

Social and Emotional Development

Your little one loves attention--including attention he gives himself! Yes, right about now your little star will recognize himself in the mirror. It's an amazing discovery! Almost as amazing as seeing familiar faces in photographs.

Some children are comforted by seeing pictures of their parents during the day, while others may get upset. Having family pictures on the wall is a great way to give a toddler a sense of belonging, especially if he is among the people pictured.

Although your toddler loves company, he does not yet have any social skills. Be prepared for a lot of shoving and pushing and crawling over playmates to get to the object of his desire. Again, nothing to worry about here, chalk the behaviour up to toddler development.

Play is still conducted side-by-side. But your little one is definitely paying attention to other people.

Keep an eye out: your toddler might be mimicking your own actions. Yes, he learnt that stern look and decisive "no" from you, mummy!

Continue reading to learn more about toddler development at 15 months. Next up is Language Development and Health and Nutrition

Speech and Language

In order to keep up with all this exploration and discovery, your little one might develop shorthand for talking to you during this toddler development stage. That is, he might prefer to use gestures and sounds to proper words.

He pulls on your leg if he wants your attention, he pushes his toys at you for playing, or his food if he refuses to eat anymore. He might try grunting at you.

Do react to his attempts at communication, even if you'd prefer him to use words. He will learn in due time, don't worry!

Actually, he might already know how to say four or five words (even if strangers don't always know what he is saying). He can follow simple instructions and might even start to ask for things.

Although his asking is more like commanding, like "Mama carry!" Believe it or not, questions are actually a more advanced form of communication that he hasn't mastered yet.

In order to encourage language skills, talk to your little one. Research has shown that the sing-song voice most parents adopt naturally is really good for children to listen to and to learn how to speak.

Model sentences and ways of talking that you want your little one to use (such as saying "please" and "thank you") even if he isn't yet able to say it back. It'll stick in his mind for later.

Health and Nutrition

It's time for the next round of immunisations: the second dose of MMR (measles, mumps and rubella). Diphteria and measles jabs are compulsory by Singapore law, so do make sure your child is on schedule.

Do you know what else your tot can do at this toddler development phase? He can now share your plate of food!

Do be careful with spices and salt, and no nuts, sesame seeds or nuts, but other than that you can safely let your toddler steal bites of your food at the hawker centre.

If you have decided to introduce dairy, toddlers should always drink full fat milk and dairy products. Don't feed him skimmed milk--your speedy Gonzales needs all the calories he can get!

The main liquid he should be drinking is water. Limit his intake of both milk and fruit juice (and always dilute the juice), as otherwise it might impact his appetite.

However, do not limit snacks! Your little one has a small stomach, so he needs constant refuelling. This also means he will probably not eat that much at dinner time.

This is normal--again, his stomach is still small and gets filled up quickly.

Continue reading to learn more about toddler development at 15 months. Next up are our Tips for Parents

Tips for Parents

Keep an eye on your adventurer, he wants to explore but doesn't know danger! If your lovely little one does not say a single word around this age, not even "mama" or "dada", starts to pull his ear in frustration and crankiness, stops responding when you call him, it might be time to talk to your paediatrician. 

All children develop at their own pace. Some wander into the great white beyond without a care in the world, others prefer to stick close to mummy and daddy.

Some toddlers already feed themselves with spoons, while others messily cram food and hands into their mouth together.

None of this is any indication for their future development or education. Legend has it that Einstein did not begin speaking until three years old! Have a look at our articles on developmental red flags to find out more about early warning signals. But if you are concerned, make sure to consult your paediatrician.

Your toddler’s next month: 16 months
Your toddler’s previous month:
14 months

Republished with permission from: theAsianparent

Do you have questions on this toddler development guide? Share with us in the comments!

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