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What should I be doing during the day with my 1 year old to teach/stimulate him?

post #1 of 38
Thread Starter 

I guess I'm just wondering if I need to more or different things with my 1 year old to teach and stimulate him. 

 

I have only one child so far.  I stay home with him full time.  We may not be able to put him in preschool, so I may be the only educator til Kindergarten.

 

He's been slow on the movement thing - sat up well on time, but rolled over at 6 months, scooted at 11 months, cruised at 11 months, crawled (modified his scoot, basically) at 12 months.  No walking or talking yet.  I speak Spanish to him, DH speaks English.  We have play date once a week with 2 others his age (who are way ahead of him on movement, at every stage, and are also saying some words now.)  It's winter here and too cold for walks/park outings.

 

We basically play together, he plays independently while I do chores, or while I'm on the computer in the same room.  We read a couple of books 2-3 times a day before naps and bed.  I want to make sure I'm doing all I can to help his development.  I feel like maybe there are activities targeted to learning I don't know about? 

 

Advice/ideas welcome!  Also would love to hear what you do with your 1 year old during the day.

 

TIA

post #2 of 38
not a sah, but wondering the same thing for my nonwalking 1yr old.
post #3 of 38

Play play play. :D  Oh, and sing & read! 

 

We do Montessori homeschooling with our almost-4 year old, and my 1 year old hops in on it too.  So, I'm constantly doing Montessori work with my 1 year old, but it's really all very low key play based stuff. And a lot of kitchen work--washing potatoes, mixing things, sorting beans...anything that gets her in the kitchen helping me is a learning experience for her, and she loves it! I have some of our Montessori activities on my blog: http://barefootinsuburbia.wordpress.com .  My favorite blog for toddler activities is http://1plus1plus1equals1.blogspot.com/ .  Search her "Tot School" stuff--it's awesome!

post #4 of 38

For the last few months, I've been trying to show DD 18m about all the stuff I do in the kitchen.  So she stands next to me on a chair while I wash dishes.  I put the chopping board on the floor and let her help cut the vegetables.  We wash things together.  We wipe stuff. 

 

I've been showing her how to put her clothes on and giving her the chance to do some of the steps herself.  She also loves playing with cups and a little tub of water.

 

Basically, I think that whatever your everyday life is... that's probably what he wants to learn about.  It's great you give him space to explore and play independently.

 

Around 12 months I felt like I wasn't doing enough for DD either...but now she's such a bundle of curiosity it's almost like I have to keep up!

 

We also like going to the library to see the fish and look at books, going to play dates, and going on walks around the city while she is wrapped up.  We still do a lot of back carrying even though she has been walking since 12 mo or so.

 

Anyhow I'm gonna keep reading this thread for more ideas! 

post #5 of 38

I'm so glad you asked this - I have a 9 month old and was wondering what else I can be doing to stimulate him and help him learn. I feel like I run out of things to say and want to be sure I'm talking enough and giving him every opportunity to learn.

post #6 of 38

This doesn't address your issues of not walking yet, etc, but at that age I think one of the best things you can do is make them part of your life.  Housework, cooking, ERRANDS, and lots and lots of walks in the stroller.  I am positive ds learned a lot because we used an outward facing front-style baby carrier for as long as possible.  Also, you might want to look into something like playtime at a place like Gymboree or at your library.  Gymboree might be a fun place for your baby to practice gross motor skills

post #7 of 38

My 1y does what I do. I go about my day and he just follows along course I have to modify it for multiple nursings, cranky toddler, naps, etc... He likes to play in the sink while I am working in the kitchen, help me unload the dishwasher, move laundry around, he has a toy vacuum that he gets while I use the real one. I have older children so he gets dragged all over for them as well, but back when I just had 1, she just did what I do as well. 

 

Your son is what 13months or so? Not walking yet is normal, it isn't a concern until 18m. If I remember correctly they consider 12 months average for a first word. 

post #8 of 38

I love this book. 

 

http://www.amazon.com/MegaSkills%C2%A9-Babies-Toddlers-Beyond-Happiness/dp/1402212143/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1292208471&sr=8-3

 

I love it just for the ideas, if nothing else. 

 

I have a little one just turned 2 a week ago.  I try to spend at least one hour each day doing something specifically with her, something not picking up, not doing chores, but an activity just with her.  They don't always work out, but that's ok.  We do things like baking cookies, making krispie treats or other snacks.  When it's warm out, we play in the sprinkler or wading pool, or even go to the big neighborhood pool.  The other day, I made playdough with her, then set her on it, with cookie cutters etc.  I also discovered that she liked playing in the flour on the table to knead the playdough on, so we drew shapes in the flour.

 

post #9 of 38

We have a 23 month old and I wonder the same thing. I am home with her all the time or it's dh that's here with her. I'm constantly wondering if I'm doing enough. I've even had people tell me it's not right for her to be home with me and she should be in school with other kids because I can't give her what she needs. Well that's a whole other rant in and of itself.

 

I will say that at 1 year we did everything together. We played a lot and she was starting to play independently while I cooked or washed dishes. I engaged her with what I was doing, talked with her about it, let her check stuff out. I really like the mama's idea of setting time aside to just be with your little one, no errands, chores, just one on one time. I think this makes a huge difference. I can tell my dd gets needy if I've been trying to get too much done without focusing on her.

 

I would also say playgroups. Playing with other kids, getting out of your house and into a new environment can be a big stimulation for little ones. Even going to the store or library.

post #10 of 38

My first kiddo walked at 14 months. My second at 12 and a half months. Sounds like you're doing plenty. You don't have to go overboard. Just relax and enjoy the ride. Lots of people homeschool - techinically, what you do now is homeschooling. But, it's all fun and games at the moment. Your kid learns while playing and interacting with you guys. 

post #11 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Peony View Post

My 1y does what I do. I go about my day and he just follows along course I have to modify it for multiple nursings, cranky toddler, naps, etc... He likes to play in the sink while I am working in the kitchen, help me unload the dishwasher, move laundry around, he has a toy vacuum that he gets while I use the real one. I have older children so he gets dragged all over for them as well, but back when I just had 1, she just did what I do as well. 

 

Your son is what 13months or so? Not walking yet is normal, it isn't a concern until 18m. If I remember correctly they consider 12 months average for a first word. 



I do this as well. My dd is almost 11 months, and she just goes along with whatever I'm doing.

On the walking, I would not be concerned at all. I personally know friend's babies that have walked as early as 7 1/2 months and not until 16 months.

post #12 of 38
Thread Starter 

Thanks to all for their advice and sharing so far!  It makes me feel better about what we're doing.

 

I must say though, I am surprised to hear about letting LO's play in the sink, help empty the dishwasher, etc!  DS wouldn't be safe to stand on a chair to reach the sink, and I get so little done sometimes that it's hard to let him put the clean dishes on the floor from the dishwasher!  Maybe I need to let him take them out and hand them to me.  Hadn't thought of that.  He does love to play with our metal mixing bowls, measuring cups etc., which I'm fine with.  But we are now putting latches on the cabinets bc there are things in each that are unsafe or too much mess potential (ie olive oil, etc) and we have limited cab space to move things around.  sigh.  Wish I could let him explore freely, but dont' see how that could work in this house.

 

I dont' want to say  no a lot to him, but I do find that I spend a lot of time trying to prevent him from getting into places/things that are unsafe or I don't want destroyed, while I'm cooking, using the bathroom, etc.  I think I need to find a way to let him be with me and participate in more activities of mine without worrying about the results.  hmm.

post #13 of 38
Play? Stimulate? I have to say, questions like this never crossed my mind when I had a one-year-old. I just went about my day, like a pp said, and he came along. When I cooked dinner, he watched from the backpack. When I did folded laundry, he played or "helped." He had access to the pots and pans in the kitchen cupboards and lots of books and toys. I read to him. He went to the grocery store with me, etc.

It never occurred to me to wonder if there was something else I should be doing or if I was doing enough. The way I saw it, getting through the day and having dinner on the table while caring for a 1yo was a huge accomplishment on its own. OP, you are doing just fine.
post #14 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by mariacm View Post

Thanks to all for their advice and sharing so far!  It makes me feel better about what we're doing.

 

I must say though, I am surprised to hear about letting LO's play in the sink, help empty the dishwasher, etc!  DS wouldn't be safe to stand on a chair to reach the sink, and I get so little done sometimes that it's hard to let him put the clean dishes on the floor from the dishwasher!  Maybe I need to let him take them out and hand them to me.  Hadn't thought of that.  He does love to play with our metal mixing bowls, measuring cups etc., which I'm fine with.  But we are now putting latches on the cabinets bc there are things in each that are unsafe or too much mess potential (ie olive oil, etc) and we have limited cab space to move things around.  sigh.  Wish I could let him explore freely, but dont' see how that could work in this house.

 

I dont' want to say  no a lot to him, but I do find that I spend a lot of time trying to prevent him from getting into places/things that are unsafe or I don't want destroyed, while I'm cooking, using the bathroom, etc.  I think I need to find a way to let him be with me and participate in more activities of mine without worrying about the results.  hmm.



 Well, mine sits on the kitchen floor and plays with the mixing bowls and pots, wooden spoons. I don't do the dishwasher while she's in the kitchen.

post #15 of 38
Only one of my kids walked by a year old-- she was just past 12 months. The other two walked at 15 and 17 months. 17 months was late-- but even then, I was told there was no reason to be concerned until 18 months. (FWIW, he's almost four years old now, and just fine.)
post #16 of 38

My second was 19mo when she started walking...................  She was born 4 weeks early and the ped did declare her officially a preterm baby because she has always been on the later end of normal for things.  My other 3 walked between 7-10mo which is more normal for *my* family.  I wouldn't worry about your 1yo not walking yet as long as the ped isn't concerned.  When your closer to 18mo and the baby isn't walking, then I'd start asking about it.

 

As for what mine do at a year old during the day........

 

chew on board books

throw stuffed animals

tear every book off the bookshelves

dump the duplos bin and scatter it

pull momma's pants down when she stops to moan at the mess that was just discovered LOL

pull every pot and pan out of my cabinet (dude, add big spoons and you got a nifty drum set)

splash in the bit of water I put in my biggest bowl for them on the floor

whipped cream on a cookie sheet (that way its edible)

LOTS of snacks

read together

stack blocks

dig in dirt

"fold" the clothes

pull all the clean clothes out of dresser drawers instead of helping put it away

jump on beds, sofa, chairs, etc.

make mommy beg the sweet angel to take a nap so she can too

 

LOL in my home, 1yo's are the FUN time.  I love ages 1-4yo, its just so active and fun and TIRING for me.  I don't worry about doing anything with them outside playing and experiencing life.  And so far, my girls all are on track academically when they are 5yo and start K (well my oldest wasn't but then she's a bit different from the other girls).  If you really *need* something to add so that you feel like you are doing enough with your 1yo, check out www.letteroftheweek.com and check out the 1yo program.  Free site, and will get you all the way into early elementary if you really feel you need to add to what you are doing now.  But trust me, it is enough.

post #17 of 38


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by kittie313 View Post

My second was 19mo when she started walking...................  She was born 4 weeks early and the ped did declare her officially a preterm baby because she has always been on the later end of normal for things.  My other 3 walked between 7-10mo which is more normal for *my* family.  I wouldn't worry about your 1yo not walking yet as long as the ped isn't concerned.  When your closer to 18mo and the baby isn't walking, then I'd start asking about it.

 

As for what mine do at a year old during the day........

 

chew on board books

throw stuffed animals

tear every book off the bookshelves

dump the duplos bin and scatter it

pull momma's pants down when she stops to moan at the mess that was just discovered LOL

pull every pot and pan out of my cabinet (dude, add big spoons and you got a nifty drum set)

splash in the bit of water I put in my biggest bowl for them on the floor

whipped cream on a cookie sheet (that way its edible)

LOTS of snacks

read together

stack blocks

dig in dirt

"fold" the clothes

pull all the clean clothes out of dresser drawers instead of helping put it away

jump on beds, sofa, chairs, etc.

make mommy beg the sweet angel to take a nap so she can too

 

LOL in my home, 1yo's are the FUN time.  I love ages 1-4yo, its just so active and fun and TIRING for me.  I don't worry about doing anything with them outside playing and experiencing life.  And so far, my girls all are on track academically when they are 5yo and start K (well my oldest wasn't but then she's a bit different from the other girls).  If you really *need* something to add so that you feel like you are doing enough with your 1yo, check out www.letteroftheweek.com and check out the 1yo program.  Free site, and will get you all the way into early elementary if you really feel you need to add to what you are doing now.  But trust me, it is enough.


LOL!!!  That sounds exactly like my days around here with my one yr old!

 

 

post #18 of 38

My Daughter is 18 months and loves art! At this age it's more about experimenting with the textures and manipulating object, not the outcome. I love tempura finger paint, homemade play dough, stickers, playing with bubble wrap, tracing her hands and feet, etc. Here is a link to a bunch of toddler art projects http://fun.familyeducation.com/childrens-art-activities/crafts/33376.html

 

Don't forget to explain everything you're doing, little one is *always* watching & learning! 

post #19 of 38

I am 27 years old. I was born in 1984. I weighted in at 1 pound and 13 ounces when I was born. The doctors told my parents that I would never walk, my teeth wouldnt all fit in my moutth. I had congestive heart failure and had a heart mermer. The heart mermer closed up before I was 5. I was in out of the hospital several times with namonia. I had a blood  transplant. The doctors didnt think I would make. They were going to put me of for adpotion and my parents stopped that in a hurry. My mother had to tube feed me everday for a while. I started walking when I was 2. My father would stand me up everyday and never gave up hope. The odds were againest me. I had troubles learning in school but now I have conquored alot of them. i thank God that he gave me life. My mother never gave up on me she had faith.

 

Today I have great health. I have two beautiful sons 2 and 6. I am married. So you see dont let lifes trials and trubilations get you. Have faith in God to get you through. We have limited understanding but the Lord has unlimited understanding. may the Lord protect your son and be with him through out his days. may the lord see you through. God Bless and take care. Julie

 

post #20 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by mariacm View Post

Thanks to all for their advice and sharing so far!  It makes me feel better about what we're doing.

 

I must say though, I am surprised to hear about letting LO's play in the sink, help empty the dishwasher, etc!  DS wouldn't be safe to stand on a chair to reach the sink, and I get so little done sometimes that it's hard to let him put the clean dishes on the floor from the dishwasher!  Maybe I need to let him take them out and hand them to me.  Hadn't thought of that.  He does love to play with our metal mixing bowls, measuring cups etc., which I'm fine with.  But we are now putting latches on the cabinets bc there are things in each that are unsafe or too much mess potential (ie olive oil, etc) and we have limited cab space to move things around.  sigh.  Wish I could let him explore freely, but dont' see how that could work in this house.

 

I dont' want to say  no a lot to him, but I do find that I spend a lot of time trying to prevent him from getting into places/things that are unsafe or I don't want destroyed, while I'm cooking, using the bathroom, etc.  I think I need to find a way to let him be with me and participate in more activities of mine without worrying about the results.  hmm.


Ha!  Its all about your comfort level.  I love Montessori, but DH is less so when it comes to things like this.  I read him a section of one of my books that went something like 'at 18 months the child can  chop small vegetables with a blunt butcher knife'  He totally freaked out.  DS does no chopping here!  smile.gif

 

However, one element I love about Montessori at this age is just what you described; taking the activity and finding a part your little one CAN do.  In our house, dishes are all on a low, open shelf so DS can retrieve them to set the table, or put them away (he is 3 now, this is probably too much for a 1 year old, just an example).  When my MIL cooked, she would always give any child in the house a bowl with a little sugar and water or an egg to stir away at if they could not actually help with the meal prep - she would act like she was adding it to what she was doing at some point and discretely toss it down the sink later. Stuff like that.

 

Beside that, read, read, read.  Then read!  Talk, talk, talk, then talk some more!  I had a hard time at first talking to my son when he didn't really talk back, but I got used to it.  I usually described the things we could see as we walked about.   The more language exposure, the better!  (Jealous that you have a bilingual house!!!)

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