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The Montessori Guide For 18 Months Kids

The Montessori Guide For 18 Months Kids

One and a half years old toddlers develop remarkably fast. Their progress can appear like leaps: this is how intensively a child begins to explore and understand the world around them. You may notice that your 18-month-old is actively trying to touch everything, hold everything in their hands, and taste everything. By this age, most toddlers walk confidently without support, run well, climb stairs, and more. Montessori activities for 18 months allow them to become acquainted with the basics of sorting objects by colors and shapes, becoming confident in various activities that require gross motor skills. Although not everything is perfect, your toddler already knows a little bit of everything. It's time to move forward, improve the skills that have begun to form and build upon them.

18-21 Months: What Will Your Child Learn in the Next Three Months?

From 18 months, a period begins when the little ones actively improve hand-eye coordination. It allows children to confidently pick up objects, carefully return them to their place, and manipulate them. They may begin to attempt to carry their toys from place to place and even try to pick up heavier items. You may also notice that the kiddo actively seeks more challenging tasks on the playground. They become interested in climbing domes, ladders, and arches — all of which can be set up at home, right in the nursery. Climbing structures for toddlers allow them to explore the possibilities of their bodies, become more skillful, and gradually invent new games.

The Best Activities and Exercises for 18 Months Kids

Offering Montessori climbing structures to children can encourage them to invent their own game scenarios besides climbing up or down. For example, you can suggest that the child imagine themselves as an animal and ask them to imagine how it would overcome this obstacle. For instance, a snake might crawl under the triangle, a bear might roll over the hill, and a crab might walk around, including walking backward.

Useful and Fun Games for Attention Development

  • Hide-and-Seek. Simple games where objects are hidden under cups or blankets, encouraging your child to find them.
  • Nesting Toys. Provide nesting cups or boxes for your child to stack and unstack, helping them understand object permanence as items disappear and reappear.
  • Peek-a-Boo. Engage in playful peek-a-boo games using scarves or hands, reinforcing the concept of objects existing even when out of sight.

Practical Life Activities

At one and a half years old, your child is fully ready to try washing their hands independently, eating without parental help, holding a spoon by themselves, washing dishes with parents, and watering plants. For example, you can wash dishes with your kiddo and ask them to help you return each item to its place (on the shelf or the dish drying rack). Then, you can wash fruits together for a snack, pour juice into glasses for the whole family, pour food for the pet, pour water into a bowl, etc. To avoid constantly holding the child or sitting them on a high kitchen table, consider getting a small Convertible Kitchen Tower Such a Montessori ladder can also transform into a chair with a table, making it a great solution that allows the child to feel independent and confident while freeing up the hands of parents.

Language Development in 18-21 Month-Olds

Your toddler's vocabulary expands significantly during this time. They are not only using individual words but are also learning to pronounce short phrases. While these phrases may still sound odd and funny, the more they communicate, the easier it becomes for them to “speak up” and cope even with the pronunciation of those sounds or words that cause difficulties. 

During this period, it's also essential to try singing together, flipping through books together, and reading aloud to the little one. Choose simple, engaging stories with colorful pictures, encouraging your child to point to and name objects and characters. As for singing, it not only soothes toddlers but also helps them pronounce sounds they cannot pronounce correctly. Also, simple songs with repetitive lyrics develop rhythm and language patterns. Another useful exercise is naming objects around the house during daily routines, such as mealtime or bath time, to help your child associate words with familiar items and activities.

Child Safety Environment

At this time, the Montessori environment for 18 months should be as safe as possible because everywhere the child can look, they will look. If this has not been done before, it is time to childproof windows and electrical outlets and remove wires from free access. At the same time, the space should be as orderly and understandable as possible. It allows the 18-month-old toddler to feel more confident and safe because the simpler and more understandable the environment around them, the easier it is to explore and understand it.

Montessori at Home

… Can be quite a challenging journey for parents, but this path is worth taking. Feeling your love and support, growing up in a safe and comfortable environment, and having a variety of developmental activities, the child will become even more skillful and confident. Don't be upset if things don't go as quickly as you expected if you encounter difficulties, and if everything is not as sweet as in other cases. In fact, perfect parenting is a hypothetical thing. We are here to help you understand that when you love your child and strive for their well-being and development, you are already on the right way. Just keep going.

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How can I create a Montessori-friendly environment at home for my 18-month-old?

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To create a Montessori-friendly environment, prioritize simplicity, order, and accessibility. Use low shelves to display toys and materials, allowing your child to choose and explore independently. Incorporate natural materials like wood and fabric, and limit the number of toys to avoid overstimulation. Ensure that the environment is safe and child-proofed, encouraging exploration and freedom of movement.

What are some essential Montessori activities for 18-month-old children?

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At 18 months, Montessori activities should focus on promoting independence and sensorimotor development. Activities like pouring, stacking, and sorting objects by color or shape and practical life skills like spooning rice or watering plants are excellent choices. These activities encourage fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination, and concentration, aligning with the Montessori philosophy of hands-on learning.

What role does independence play in Montessori education for 18-month-olds?

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Independence is fundamental in Montessori education as it fosters confidence, self-esteem, and self-reliance. Encourage your child to participate in daily activities such as dressing themselves, feeding, and tidying up toys. Provide child-sized tools and materials that support independence, allowing them to engage in tasks autonomously.