When your baby is one year old, it is an exciting time for both of you! Your child is not only showing a lot of curiosity about the world, but is also very focused on you.
For all of the adventurous spirit that children show around this age, they really need the security of a parent or other loving caregiver to rely on. They want to keep you in sight and show off for you. The more you are available and reliable when your child needs you, the more your child will learn to function independently.
At this age, children will be able to feed themselves and are actively learning to dress and un-dress on their own. Children love repetition, and will learn by doing things over and over. They may point to familiar things in their favourite book as you read along. Children are also great imitators of adults – they love performing, and the more everyone reacts and exclaims, the more they’ll do it.
Because your 12 month is more mobile, be sure that your home is properly childproofed. It is also time to start setting some limits, especially to protect your child from dangerous things. Your child will understand what ‘no’ means, although it will be a while before they actually accept what it means.
It’s also a good idea for both you and your child to spend time with other children and parents. You can go to local library story times, coffee groups or playgroups formed with your friends or through drop-in centres.
Remember, each child is unique. Not all children develop at the same rate in each area. If you are concerned about your child’s development, you should consult your child’s doctor.