Once your baby learns to pull themselves up to stand, they’ll be excited to learn what else is out there in the world for them.Walking is a significant milestone in your child’s development; it calls for your little one to coordinate their major muscle groups, from their back and arms, to their feet.
Babies usually start walking around their first birthday or around the 14th month, and during this exciting time you can help them achieve this milestone with simple techniques and words of encouragement.
Infants go from crawling to pulling up, cruising and then walking. However, keep in mind that all babies are different so your baby may require a lot of work to learn how to work, or they may just start walking out of the blue; the key is encouragement and lots of practice!
So, set your camera in video mode and try out these tricks that’ll help your child get going:
1. Hold their hands
One of the most common ways to help your little one practice putting weight on their feet is to walk behind them while holding both their hands—which means a lot of bent-over walking for you. Make sure to give enough support that they don’t topple over, but not so much that it strains their shoulders and elbows.
Naturally, as babies become stronger and curious, they start pulling themselves up with the support of furniture, or hanging themselves from mom or dad’s pj’s.
2. Activate cruise control
Cruising is when your baby starts using the furniture and walls to get around. If your little one can stand but seems unsure or afraid to take the next step, this is an indication that your child needs to practice balance their weight while on the move. You can help them out in this endeavor by lining up stable (and childproofed!) furniture so that they become more confident while cruising and have plenty of spots to pull themselves up.
You can even place tantalizing toys out of your child’s immediate reach to encourage them to cruise around or even stand up (possibly after a few topples) to get the prize.
3. Use peer models
Take your baby to play areas that have toddlers of the same age. A child care center is a good option. Seeing other babies their age walk will inspire an innate desire to do what everyone else in doing. Point towards the other tiny walkers, encourage them and praise their skills—a little friendly competition can be powerful motivation!
Experienced teachers at our toddler daycare center in Lenexa, Kansas, support your child’s fine and gross motor skills and help them walk. We not only have a separate playground for toddlers, but we also have dedicated time to indulge toddlers in story books and music as a group.
Get in touch with us here for more information.