The arrival of your walking toddler will present many new challenges as you try to keep up with the bubble of energy who has recently found his or her feet. But as much as walking can be exhausting for the grown-up doing the chasing, it’s also a fascinating time for your child as they begin to discover and experience the world at new and dizzying heights.
To help with first steps it’s first important to give your baby plenty of opportunity to to pull up and get used to standing first. Place interesting toys, such as simple one-piece puzzles on the sofa or a low chair and encourage your child to stand at the sofa as they complete the puzzle or game.
Once baby is comfortable standing with support, place the interesting objects a few steps out of reach, for example at the other end of the sofa. Your baby will ‘cruise’ across to reach the toy.
Once they are confident cruising, you can begin to leave them standing unsupported in the middle of the room – building core strength and balance as you do.
Now it’s time to walk!
Walking tip: once your baby is walking, put them down in a standing position rather than sitting, to encourage walking.
A note on baby walkers: push along trolleys are excellent walking aids, acting like a Zimmer frame to support and steady your child as they go. Choose a heavy one so that it doesn’t topple over (we stock an excellent HABA walker) and one they can transport blocks and other important goods in (great for a transporting schema). Baby walkers that the child sits in used to be popular but research has shown many models can hinder development and prevent the child from walking correctly.