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Climbing question

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

I've been reading posts from the forum about how everyone deals with climbing, and most say "let it happen." But I have a question. So far, my 21 month old DD has not been allowed to climb on things because we are mostly in the kitchen/dining area (one big room) so climbing means A) onto the counter with everything on it that can't get moved B) onto the stove C) onto the top of the couch then over the rail of our split level or D) on top of her high chair and standing on the tray. There's no "safe" climbing areas except maybe the table (*sigh*).

 

So we've been stopping her every time but nothing is working and she's getting worse and more terrible two-ish. What do you guys think I should do? Time out is a game to her at the moment, telling her no firmly doesnt help, playing outside doesnt help, and can I back peddle since for about 6 months now I've been saying No?

 

Just to clarify, it's not the falling part I am afraid of, the only reason she climbs is to get into things and I just can't clear every counter in our entire kitchen. Not possible, so how can I let her climb when it's all about getting things she shouldnt have. She is a GRABBER. Anything close to the edge she grabs it.

post #2 of 10
At home I would lift her down and redirect every time she tries to climb somewhere unsafe. Then I would try to give her plenty of opportunities to climb safely, such as at the park or in your yard or wherever. You could also consider some sort of climb-able toy for at home. We bought our LO a small plastic slippery dip from Kmart. It was $10. She climbs up the steps and up the slide bit and it's light enough that we can easily move it around the house.

ETA - for the kitchen bench, would she be happier to stay off it if she could be up at the same level when you're working there? Could you set her up on a stool or learning tower or similar with some of her own utensils while you work?

With the highchair, we let our toddler climb in and out herself and we just "spot" her. It does depend on the style of chair you have though, we used some when we've been out that she couldn't get into herself.
post #3 of 10

Can you do something like a Learning Tower she could use to get a better vantage point?  Or just a "special chair" that is allowed to be climbed?

Involve her in the cooking with a task to keep those grabby hands busy?

Maybe spend as much time as possible at the playground climbing so she can get it out of her system safely?

post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hi ThreeTwoFive, if I give her anything taller than 3 inches she uses it as a stool and uses it to get on cabinets (I have an island, a cabinet by my fridge, and a looong cabinet that goes space-oven-space-sink-space in an "L" shape)). She'll stack toys until it gives her enough height to get up and into something. She pushes her kitchen set (its like 4 feet high and heavy!) around and uses it like a chair to get up into stuff. She seriously is the most inventive "using things to climb onto other things" child I've ever seen. So giving her something just means another thing she can use to climb onto the cabinets :(

post #5 of 10
What does she do when she gets onto the bench? Is there somethIng on there that she wants or does she just like the height advantage? If it is the former then you may need to put up with the inconvenience of putting things somewhere else until she grows out of this phase. If it is the latter then a learning tower may help. She can climb into it and be up high to see and participate.
post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 

She wants to get things. The coffee maker, the phone charging, the toaster, the coffee grinder, the fridge ice maker, the draining rack, the paper towels. You name it, she wants it. But I cant put those things away so I am at a complete and exhausted loss. I'm 5 1/2 months pregnant, work two jobs, and a FT student... this is our first child so we are winging it and all the sudden things are so different with her, terrible-twosies.

 

Let me put it this way: my sister (who has a 5 and 3 year old) came to visit and said to me, "Good lord, why do you have so many gates around everything. I never had -any- gates and my kids did just fine. . . " and I had to say "If I dont gate it off, she's into it." Even my mom nodded her head and said, "Yeah this one REALLY likes to grab things and push buttons, it's uncanny."
 

post #7 of 10
She does sound full on :-) would it help to spend some time exploring those things with her? Let her put some bread in the toaster and push the lever down. Let her press the buttons as you make a coffee. Let her spin the paper towel dispenser. Press the button for a cup of ice then let her play with it. Give her the dish rack and some plastic dishes to Play with on the floor. The goal being to make all these thIngs less interesting than they currently are because they're "forbidden". You might end up with a bit of mess and waste but I think I'd put up with that if it made the benches a little bit less attractive.
post #8 of 10

My DD just turned 2 yrs old, and has an insatiable need to climb! I got her this junior loft bed and gave her a bedroom of her own. http://www.walmart.com/ip/Junior-Metal-Loft-Bed-Silver/14932120?findingMethod=rr

 

I know she's too little to sleep in it right now (don't want her climbing at night when I'm asleep), but we co-sleep anyway. It was only $119 w/free shipping (cheaper than a lot of climbing toys she would outgrow), and I found a mattress for $99, and since it's a twin size bed, she'll be able to use it through college if she wants to. My DD used to try to get into everything all the time, but now when she's bored with me, she goes and plays in her room. We did a lot of practical lessons on how to climb safely, what can happen if she bounces too high on the mattress, how hard the rails are and how easy it would be to fall off in different ways. I supervised her constantly in there for the first week to make sure she was being safe, and now she's doing great with it. Each day I make sure we clean her room up somewhat, and I'll alternate which toys I put up on the bed for her. That way she feels like there is some new fun aspect to playing with different toys up high and down low. Sometimes I go sit and play with her, so she doesn't feel isolated in there. 

 

Anyway, she LOVES having her own space to play and climb in, and not being told "No! Stop! Put it down, please!" all day long. She hasn't gotten into my sewing stuff once since I set up her room, and hasn't even gotten very nosy into boxes of things I have on the floor of stuff I don't want her to get into (I gave up my sewing room for her to have the bedroom). She used to cry whenever we'd come in from the playground outside or if we walked past it but didn't have time to play. Now she's happy to come inside because she can still climb.

post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 

She just started to learn how to climb out of her crib so it's toddler bed time anyway. Hmm, lost of good food for thought!
 

post #10 of 10

This is probably a silly question, but do you have a play kitchen for her with lots and lots of realistic gadgets (or possibly even real gadgets from garage sales)?  If she wants the stuff, maybe it would help less to stop the climbing and more to bring the stuff down to her level.
 

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