The bond between a parent or caregiver and a child is considered to be essential to their emotional growth and development. It is what gives the carer the want and need to care for and respond to the child and promotes a trust between the two. Bonding allows the toddler to feel safe and protected as it grows.
As your toddler grows older and starts to interact with you in a more complex way, you may feel the bond between you grow as well. Spending quality time playing with your child, encouraging body contact and communicating with them will help to promote a bonds growth. Your child will also form more close bonds with other people in their life, such as siblings, relatives and family friends.
Now that your toddler is a little older, they’re communication skills have grown exponentially. They will now use language skills to communicate what he or she needs from you, rather than crying. They will still cry however, for many different reasons. He or she will cry when hungry, upset, has a wet or dirty nappy, is feeling overwhelmed or for no reason at all. When your toddler is crying, encourage them to use their language skills to better communicate their needs.
You will also notice your toddler’s other forms of communicating developing, such as making more prolonged eye contact, using body language to express themselves, and initiating and participating in conversation with you and others. Engaging with your child will help them to feel loved and comforted, as well as helping them to develop their bourgeoning communication skills.
As a toddler, your child’s play skills will evolve from playing by themselves (solitary play), to playing alongside other children (parallel playing) and eventually playing interactively with others (co-operative play). At this age, your child may start to ‘guide’ the play themselves, often telling you how they want to play, and wanting to control the experience.
Playing with your toddler at this age is about discovery and experiences that will help stimulate their imagination, and in turn, aid intellectual development.
Your toddler will most likely enjoy interactive playing with toys that incorporate various elements. Games that integrate both actions and singing help your child to improve their memory and co-ordination.
Drawing, painting and other practical endeavours develop fine motor skills and encourage creativity. Your child will also develop their cognitive and intellectual skills through play, as he or she learns to rationalise with general ideas and objects.
raisingchildren.net.au. (2020, August 31). Positive relationships for parents and children: how to build them. Retrieved from https://raisingchildren.net.au/toddlers/connecting-communicating/connecting/parent-child-relationships
raisingchildren.net.au. (2019, November 19). Talking with babies and toddlers: how to do it and why. Retrieved from https://raisingchildren.net.au/babies/connecting-communicating/communicating/talking-with-babies-toddlers