Friday, July 23, 2010
When your child is somewhere between ten to eighteen months, you may notice the following: A one year old may race on all fours to greet his father at the door. He may pull himself to his feet by clutching at daddy pant legs and chortle when he is lifted for a hug. He is acting upon his understanding of cause and effect, learning to form patterns of behavior and to inter mix actions with bits and pieces of emotion these are the first signs of ability to organize.
In the previous age when your child got angry it was fleeting reaction that leads nowhere. Now he may crawl over and bite the playmate- who inspired his anger. He also shows his love more demonstrably, making a big show of bestowing hugs and kisses. When the toddler learns to pout, he has found a way to act out his disappointment and uses it to play for his parent’s sympathy. A little later on, he shows the beginnings of pride. He wants you to notice when he stacks three blocks or pulls off his socks all by himself. All these developments are tokens of your child’s first real sense of who he is.
This emerging sense of self is shaped as the child experiments with patterns of behavior. She is constantly watching, always trying to learn how things work. She is constantly watching always trying to learn how things work. She leafs a dozen times through a magazine, empties the cupboard of all the pots and pans. She discovers that everything has a specific function: A rake scrapes up leaves, the telephone carries voices, and the high chair holds her up where she can see her parent’s eyes. All the while, the child is studying her parent’s actions and finds that they have their functions as well. She begins to imitate adult behavior as a way of trying out the actions and emotions she observes, and in some cases, what starts as imitation becomes the real thing. With this new tool at her disposal, the child can initiate actions to get her needs met- tugging on the refrigerator door for example, to show that she is thirst and wants a drink of juice or milk.