Toddler development and milestones: your 14 month old

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Toddler development at 14 months calls for boundaries as well as lots of hugs and kisses. Find out what other exciting things your tot can do now.

Get yourselves ready for the next stage in toddler development: The nitty-gritty of parenting is about to start. Your toddler is developing a personality and you could suddenly discover that your adorable wee one has a mind of his own.

It’s time to step up and start teaching your cutie pie about rules and boundaries. But don’t worry – the terrible twos are a long way off! Your toddler exercises his mind and his heart, showering you with hugs and kisses. 

14 Month Old Development and Milestones: Is Your Tot on Track?

Physical Development

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Don’t worry about your “duck-walking” toddler. Eventually, he’ll get it right and get rid of his cute wobbly gait.

By now, most toddlers can walk a few steps unaided. In fact, his gross motor skills are expanding rapidly! Not only can he probably walk, he may also be able to stand up by himself from a sitting position.

And if he’s mastered that, it’s only a small toddler development leap to learning how to bend over and stand up again – without toppling over.

Other skills you can keep an eye out for include walking upstairs with the aid of an adult and even dancing. Yes, if your family loves to play music, you might catch your wee one jigging along. He doesn’t have a sense of rhythm yet, but that won’t stop him from joining!

Don’t worry if your little one wobbles around like a cute little ducky when he walks. This is because he is still bow-legged and because he is wearing a fat diaper! This is completely normal and part of toddler development. In time his legs will straighten out as he begins to walk more upright.

As part of his fine motor skills, your little one might be beginning to scribble with crayons (if you let him, that is!) or stack two blocks on top of each other. He may also be able to turn the pages in a book.

Activities to Boost Physical Development:

During your reading sessions with your toddler, get him to turn the pages if it is a board book. Paper pages might be a little tricky for now because he might end up tearing the page accidentally.

Expect and allow some mess, whether it is during meal time or craft time because both are essential activities that help improve your toddler’s fine motor skills.

He might not be able to hold the crayons correctly for now, but it is still good pincer grip practice. You can also teach him to distinguish between colours even if all his artwork is mostly scribbling.

When to Talk to Your Doctor: 

  • If your child does not point to objects and pictures
  • When your child is unable to stand unaided

Cognitive Development

 

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Your toy-eating toddler is not hungry, but using all his senses to discover the world.

As part of your toddler’s 14 month old development and milestones, he is filled with wonder and curiosity. His growing physical skills enable him to discover a whole new part of the world: the insides of things. He can get into cupboards and drawers, open things, empty things, put things back into other things. 

At this toddler development stage, your child is insatiably curious, so be sure to have child-proofed your home. He might even have figured out how to twist and open bottle caps, so all manner of cleaning liquids should be locked away.

All this learning means his brain is busy-busy-busy! It might seem as though his attention span has gotten shorter, but that’s just because there’s so much to see and do!

Your little one is still exploring the world with his senses which means he is bound to stick everything into his mouth. He loves small things, picking them up off the floor, studying them.

He also understands now that you and he and the world are three separate things, so he is figuring out his own place.

This is the time for parents to begin setting boundaries. Your child is still too young for timeouts or other types of consequences. So for now, you might need to keep repeating the rules and put up safety gates at staircases and kitchen entrances. It might seem a lot of effort, but your toddler will be able to explore safely and that is a big pay off.

Activities to Boost Cognitive Development:

Since your toddler is going to be opening cupboards and drawers a lot during his 14 month old development and milestones, why not designate a safe one for him to empty things out? Fill it up with toy utensils, plastic fruits and empty plastic bottles – things he will want to take out. You can always show him how to put things back into the cupboard, but make sure to childproof the rest and store household detergents in a safe place.

A sensory bin is also a great idea and might actually keep your tot occupied for ages! They are fun and involve many types of tactile sensory play!

If the weather is clear, take him outdoors. The opportunities for new experiences and growth are endless.

When to Talk to Your Doctor: 

  • If your child does not point to objects and pictures
  • When your child is unable to stand unaided

Social and Emotional Development

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If your tot starts to cry while exploring, don’t worry. He probably realised that the dark corner under the stairs is a pretty scary place. Be prepared for a list of other things that your child may start fearing. It’s normal and part of your toddler’s 14 month old development and milestones.

You are still your child’s favourite person in the whole world! He loves to play with you, so do spend some time with him and see where he leads you for a change.

It is very educational for him and will develop his sense of autonomy and self-confidence. This will give him the best possible grounding for achievement in later life.

One behaviour that he already shows is a willingness to help you. Try and let him take part in your household errands. It probably means more work for you, but at the same time, it’s quality time with him.

He might also begin to play by himself for a few minutes here and there. This newfound independence is part of his 14 month old development and milestones. However, independence means new fears too. Your little one could be scared of the dark stairwell or having no lights in his room. Don’t worry, this is normal at this toddler development stage.

Activities to Boost Socio-Emotional Development:

Start getting your little tot involved with simple house chores like passing you the laundry so that you can hang them up. He will be really happy to help you, and this will give him a great sense of achievement.

Continue to arrange play dates so that he can socialise and play alongside his peers.

Try playing “Mirror me” and have him copy your sad, happy and angry face. When he knows the various names to these emotions then he will be able to express himself better.

When to Talk to Your Doctor: 

  • If your toddler is particularly afraid of new situations and generally reluctant to try anything outside his comfort zone
  • When he seems lethargic and unmotivated to try out new things

Language and Speech Development

Personhood comes with wants and needs, and your toddler will be trying hard to make you understand him. His vocabulary is growing, and he is exercising his voice by yelling.

He might even be stringing sounds together to make new ones. He is on the cusp of speaking. Some toddlers might even say a few recognisable words by now. So this is, indeed, an exciting part of toddler development.

As part of your toddler’s 14 month old development and milestones, he can understand so many more words than he can actually say. His spoken vocabulary still consists of three to five words, like “Mama,” “Dada,” or “ball” or even “dog”, but he continues to learn the meanings of new words every day.

None of this is any indication of his future development or education. Legend has it that Einstein did not begin speaking until three years old!

Activities to Boost Language and Speech Development:

You could try playing sorting games with your little one, such as stacking rings on top of each other or a shape sorting cube. Engage him in conversation by asking where the rings or shapes go or you can always teach him the names or colours of the shapes.

Bring a ball with you and play outside with your toddler because he can already respond correctly to one step verbal commands, such as “Give the ball to Daddy.”

When reading to him, try making animal sounds or reading in an animated voice when the character speaks. He will have so much fun pointing out the correct animals and characters in his book.

When to Talk to Your Doctor: 

  • When your child does not understand simple common words like mama or milk
  • If he is not using any words at all during his 14 month old development and milestones stage

Health and Nutrition

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As part of his 14 month old development and milestones, he should weigh about 9.0-11.3 kg and be around 71.0-80.5 cm tall.

Your toddler’s quest for independence could lead to picky eating. However, this same urge for doing things by himself could also solve the problem: He might eat a lot better if you let him feed himself.

Your little one will need between 1,000 and 1,400 calories a day, depending on his physical activity level. So feed him at least 3 servings of grains (half must be whole grains), 1 serving each of fruits and vegetables, 2 servings of protein and 2 servings of milk per day.

That is equivalent to 1/2 of rice, 1 small apple, 1 cup cooked mashed or finely chopped vegetables, 1 cooked egg and 3 small cubes of natural cheese the size of a dice.

Vaccinations due include Hib, MMR, PCV and chicken pox if your toddler hasn’t gotten them. HepA shot, which is done six months apart, can be due right about now if it wasn’t already done earlier.

A common health issue might be short bouts of mild diarrhoea because he keeps putting things into his mouth during his exploration stage and maybe a spot of nappy rash.

When to Talk to Your Doctor: 

  • If your child starts to show an allergic reaction towards certain food
  • When your child is not eating well and you’re considering other supplements

*Please note that development milestones vary from child to child. If you have any concerns regarding your little one’s growth, do not hesitate to consult your paediatrician. 

 

Source: WebMD

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Next month: Toddler development and milestones: your 15 month old

 

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