Children's Age-by-Age Guide: 12 to 18 Months
Your baby is more active now that she can walk unaided, but her growth slows since she's less interested in food. With every day, she becomes more coordinated and confident in her newfound abilities. By 12 months, she'll probably creep up the stairs whenever you remove the gate. She can scribble on paper using a fat crayon and point to an object with her index finger. She's good with a fork and spoon, but would much rather play with them than use them to eat.
Let your child explore on her own as much as possible, but keep an eye on her at all times so her curiosity doesn't get her into trouble. Push-along toys are favorites at this age as are wheeled trucks, trains, and pull-along animals. Shape-sorter toys, simple puzzles and lots of different types of balls to kick and throw are also smart choices.Developmental Milestones
Your child will begin to use words and gestures to make his needs and wants known. This is a good time to introduce drinking from a cup at mealtimes since it fosters his growing independence. Finger foods become important now and you may have trouble getting him to eat certain foods he used to love.
It's vital that you allow him to feed himself even though it's messy and he won't end up eating that much. Keep mealtimes as pleasant as possible and don't force feed him. He should eat three meals a day, plus a couple of healthy snacks. Try to focus on fruits, vegetables, and grains as the greater part of his diet; only about 20 percent of his calories should come from meat, eggs, and dairy products.
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