Yes, yes- I’m at it again! More baby development. Can you tell what kind of books I’ve been reading lately?! This week I’ve been thinking about what exactly is involved in a key stage of baby development – teaching baby to walk. This has been a current hot topic as a friend of mine was recently bemoaning the fact that her 19 month old is yet to take her first steps. Both of mine were early walkers, taking their first tottering steps at just ten months old. My friend asked me for tips on teaching baby to walk, having been referred to the Children’s hospital.
Um, ok. I’m not sure how to teach baby to walk actually. Mine just kind of did it – sort of auto baby development! One day they were crawling, the next they were pulling up and then they were walking. My husband said they were preparing to move out of home but I know he’s only joking…
Hence the reading. Hence the increased interest in baby development. I have actually realised that there are a few things you can do to help. So here is my ultimate baby development guide in teaching baby to walk:
- Line up chairs against a wall, with a coveted toy on the last chair; encourage your baby to walk along the line to get the toy. Tell yourself: my baby can get that toy! Stay positive and encourage her all the way.
- Play baby games. Tell yourself: my baby can stand up and sit down with ease. Prove it! Play ring-a-ring-a-roses and similar games. This helps to improve posture and balance.
- Blow some bubbles. Sounds simple but babies love bubbles and she will want to follow them instinctively.
- Resist the urge to move the goal post. When you’re teaching baby to walk, she can become frustrated, more so if you play the carrot and donkey game. If you put a toy in a certain place, don’t move it as she gets close, in the hope that she will walk further. That’s just mean!
- Hold hands! Mine used to love walking with us this way. Yes, it breaks your back but at least you can say: my baby can walk. And the more you believe that, the more your baby will too. Practise makes perfect after all.
I never told my friend that my husband and I used biscuits to help get our babies from one side of the room to the other. The books never mentioned that as a tried and tested technique…