Beginning of your Childs 2nd year is beginning of a more independent phase, as your baby becomes a Toddler.
A Toddler is a baby who has achieved enough body control to be relatively independent. Learning to walk and talk opens up his world and with you as his guide there is much to explore and discover about his surroundings, his family and friends and himself. Everyday there will be many new experiences to share and enjoy.
You have spent the first year learning to understand and meet your baby’s physical and emotional needs and it’s been a very hands-on process. Now the focus changes. This second year is much more about helping your toddler become a self- sufficient individual, branching out into wider world, with you as a guide. During toddlerhood there is a gradual but pronounced decrease in helplessness. Helplessness will gradually be replaced by independence. It means that every day, week and month the individual becomes more independent such that, in his second birthday it seems to be a quite a different person than what it begin with at the completion of first year.
Your toddler continues to need your active encouragement to explore her capabilities and surroundings. She will also need you to return to as a safe emotional base because, for all her apparent independence, she needs your love and reassurance.
Developmentally the physical change is enormous. Once your child learns to walk, her horizons expand. And learning to talk opens up her world to you and the whole world to her, in a new and exciting way. Your toddler will constantly attempt to move ahead of her immediate capabilities, which may lead to enormous frustration f or her. Learning about limits, her own and those set by you, is new for both of you. With patient teaching and encouragement, she can learn to follow basic rules and co-operate with your expectations.
Toddler age is the true foundation age because at this time many behavioral patterns, many attitudes and many patterns of emotional expression are getting established. Importance of these foundations came from the work of Freud, who reached to conclusion that personality maladjustments in adulthood had their origins in unfavorable childhood experience. According to Erickson, how babies are treated will determine whether they will develop “basic trust” or “basic Distrust”- viewing the world as safe, reliable and nurturing or as full of threat, unpredictability and treachery.
The four main reasons why this age is considered as foundation age
- Contrary to our traditional myth, children don’t out grow undesirable traits as they grow older. Instead, behaviors are established irrespective of good or bad, harmful or beneficial.
- Early foundations quickly develop into habits through repetition; they will have a lifelong influence on child’s personality and social adjustments.
- If any undesirable behavior or attitude is formed then the sooner we correct it will be better. It is easier to correct in this age.
- Learning experience play dominant roles in development, they can be directed and controlled along the desired lines of personal and social adjustments.
Now is the time for rapid growth and changes. Babies will become less top heavy than birth. Their limbs develop in better proportion to the head.
Toddlers develop Individuality. Individuality in appearance, in the behavior and attitude is apparent.
Toddler begins to socialize. Toddler quickly gives way to a desire of becoming a part of the social group. It shows this through attachment behavior. They show strong attachment towards mother, family members and friends.
Toddler hood is a hazardous age. Establishing a safe environment is very important. As a baby, your toddler explores things with her hands and this continues, except now the exploration isn’t limited to those toys given to her. She can move around her home and everything is worth investigating, whether it’s the dog’s bowl, the kitchen cupboards, or the CD player. How can she tell the difference between those buttons she can press and those she can’t It not possible without your help, so remove items that can be damaged and direct her attention to activities that take advantage of her natural curiosity and pleasure of exploration.
Setting the pace for your toddler plays a crucial factor. Toddlers cannot self limit their activity. They tend to move straight from one activity to another without pause and to put every ounce of their energy into each. Your toddler will rely on you to help set the pace, so that she can manage to enjoy activities without overdoing them to the point of exhaustion, which is sometimes where the flash point of frustration ignites into a tantrum.
Toddler still need lots of rest and most will probably continue to need at least one day time nap for this year. Well – slept and rested toddlers will manage life better than those who are tired. And if your toddler is a poor sleeper at night, don’t be tempted to keep her going all day in the hope that she will sleep continuously through the night. The more tired she is, the less easy she will find it to relax into a good sleep pattern.
Toddlerhood is an ideal age to learn skills. There are three reasons for this.
- Toddlers enjoy repetition, and therefore willing to repeat an activity until they have acquired the ability to do it well.
- Children are adventuresome and as a result, don’t held back by fear of hurting themselves or being ridiculed by peers.
- Young Toddlers learn easily and quickly because their bodies are still very pliable and have not acquired many skills that they do not interfere with the acquisition of a new one.
It is a Teachable Age for acquiring new skills. If children are not given opportunities to learn skills when they are developmentally ready to do so and when they want to do so because of their growing desire for independence, they will not only lack the necessary foundations for the skills their peers have learned but they will also lack motivation to learn skills when they eventually given an opportunity to do so.
This is the age when Hand skills like self feeding and dressing are perfected. Greatest improvement can be seen from 1.6 to 3.6 years of age. Brushing the hairs and bathing are skills that can be acquired easily.
Leg Skills can be trained. Once the Toddler has learned to walk, they turn their attention to learning other movements requiring the use of legs. They learn to hop, skip, gallop and jump by the time they are 5 or 6 years.
A toddler has a strong motivation to learn to speak. As they find it essential tool to socialize. Learning to speak will make them independent.
Ability to comprehend is necessary as it is important to understand what others are communicating. This is easily illustrated in case of people leaving in other states. Many times kids are not able to communicate due to difference of language and become isolated. Ability to comprehend will depend on the development of listening skills.
Ultimately, this is a wonderfully exciting time for you and your toddler, full of new experiences. Understanding what makes your toddler tick and what her needs are, will help you create those opportunities that bring out the best in her.
In coming thrilling years of change, your support, encouragement and love can do more than anything else to help your toddler blossom. Understanding how your toddler develops is vital to helping you tune into her needs and give her what she wants.