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Your 18-Month-Old: Motor, Cognitive, Verbal, and Social Skills

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Intellectual or Cognitive Skills That Develop by Age 18 Months
It's hard not to think that your child is brilliant at 18-months-old. A short time ago, it seemed all she could do was sit in her bouncy seat, and now, she's building towers with blocks, rattling off familiar tunes, and imitating animals. The more you interact, read, and point things out, the more your toddler will soak up new skills and knowledge like a sponge. Some of the things you can expect your child to begin to do around 18 months of age include:
  • play simple make-believe games
  • begin to explore cause and effect
  • understand differences between similar objects such as pictures of different animals
  • remember familiar songs or parts of a book and react to them in the same way each time

Highlight: Toys that deliver a "payoff" when your toddler takes action (music that plays when you press a button, balls that cascade down a ramp when you flip a switch, etc.) will probably be your child's favorite things around this age. Just as fun, the "drop the cup" game so many toddlers think is pure joy (and mothers find so tedious). Your child may drop his cup once, twice...ten times an evening. To satisfy your toddler without going crazy, you can try giving the cup back twice. If she drops it a third time, simply put the cup away without too much drama. Eventually, she should learn that throwing things on the floor isn't acceptable behavior.

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