Your child is between the1 month to 18 months

A toddler’s development during the first stage

Children develop of their own accord, but they do need those around them to provide them with experiences and the right kind of guidance. In this timeline, you will get to know the milestones related to motor skills, language development, social and emotional and cognitive/sensory development, and personality development. You can also read about how Kindergarden sets up the children's environment to help them develop optimally. We make use of the “recurring” moments in which we’re tending to them individually, such as while dressing and undressing them, changing their diapers, or putting them to bed, to give them a little extra one-on-one attention. This turns an everyday care moment into a special development moment.

Did you know that toddlers at this age tend to increasingly reach out to and interact with their age peers, but that they have yet to learn to be empathetic (i.e., put themselves in another person’s shoes)?

Development occurs during the interactions between the children themselves, and their interactions with the childcare staff and the environment. Our horizontal groups enable us to provide guidance appropriate to the different developmental stages. In doing so, we are guided by the pace and preferences of the children. After all, children are individuals and experience their milestones at a time appropriate to them. This timeline indicates the things you might encounter during the first important years of a child's life, but we also allow the children the space to reach their own milestones and develop at their own pace!

1 month to 18 months

Motor development (physical development)

Children who have been able to move around freely at their own pace from a young age tend to sit and walk with greater ease when they get older, as well as being able to speak and think more clearly than children who have not had that opportunity. This is because freedom of movement is favorable to children’s overall development.

Important milestones in the period from 1 month to 18 months
  • Standing up on their own

    Toddlers can often already stand up from a prone position, where they roll themselves on their belly first and then get themselves to stand up.

  • First steps

    Toddlers generally take their first steps (around 12 months of age) with curved legs and their feet apart and straight and their arms stretched out ahead.

  • Motor skills

    Toddlers’ fine motor skills keep improving at this stage: grasping small objects between their thumb and index finger, building a tower of blocks, and eating with a spoon. When a child is holding something, they often wrap their whole hand around it.

  • Drinking independently

    While we still need to assist children sometimes when they’re younger, by the time they reach the age of 12 months they can drink from a cup on their own.

  • Balance

    They may be a little stiff and have their arms stretched out, but children can still run around when they’re around 18 months of age! It’s hard for a running toddler to suddenly come to a standstill, because they’re still developing their balancing skills at this stage.

How does Kindergarden support children in their motor development (physical development)?

1 month to 18 months

Social and emotional development

Social behavior is not innate but acquired, and children learn the most through a combination of exercise and experience. We watch and listen carefully and see that we can learn the most from each other. At this age, children often want to play with the same toys. For this reason, you will see that many of the toys in the group are available in multiples. This prevents conflict and encourages the children to play together. Sharing is still very difficult at this age.

Important milestones in the period from 1 month to 18 months
  • Playing together.

    Toddlers display mimicking behavior on a day-to-day basis and exhibit this independently. This is how we establish basic interplay, for example crawling or running behind a ball together. At this age, they are still more inclined to play alongside each other.

  • Will of their own

    Toddlers say “no” to let others know what they do not want, which helps them develop their budding independence. In other words, they develop a will of their own!

  • Shame and embarrassment

    When we tell a child they’ve been “bad,” they experience shame, because adults have taught them what constitutes “good” and “bad behavior.”

  • Empathy

    At this age, toddlers tend to increasingly reach out to and interact with their age peers, but they have yet to learn to be empathetic (i.e., put themselves in another person’s shoes). For example, they might not understand why another child is sad when their toys are taken away from them.

  • Temper tantrums

    Toddlers want all kinds of things, but are often not yet able to articulate these desires. Since they have no control yet over their emotions, this can lead to temper tantrums.

How does Kindergarden support children in their social and emotional development?

1 month to 18 months

Language development

Since toddlers are highly susceptible to adopting the language they hear around them, we need to address them in positive/affirmative and respectful language.

Important milestones in the period from 1 month to 18 months
  • In their own words

    One-word sentences; toddlers create their own words. These tend to consist of one sound and one consonant: “tree” becomes “tee,” “house” becomes “ouse,” etc.

  • Separate words

    Children use separate words to express a full sentence and link separate words to a specific event

  • Assigning meaning

    Children learn that you can use one word to refer to things/objects, situations, and feelings, as well as pointing to objects they want the adult to name.

  • Oral motor skills

    Children gradually learn to produce certain sounds and noises, which is why oral motor development is very important. Children intuitively learn to use their lips and tongue more often when they speak.

  • Monologues

    Toddlers vocalize all the time while playing, even launching into entire monologues! They keep using the same words and sounds to describe specific foods, toys, and animals.

How does Kindergarden support children in developing their language skills?

1 month to 18 months

Cognitive and sensory development

The process is more important than the outcome. Toddlers who proudly demonstrate that they can put on their own pants receive a compliment; the fact that they put them on the wrong way around is less important.

Important milestones in the period from 1 month to 18 months
  • Order and connection

    Children already understand the regular order of things, but not yet how these things relate to each other.

  • Rules

    Children understand rules only at the time they are provided, and they also link the rules to the person communicating them and the context in which they’re communicated.

  • “Hey, I can do this myself!”

    Toddlers begin to understand that their behavior can create a specific situation, and will then explore the effect of this behavior. This is different than during the first year of life, when they simply reacted to situations:

  • Generalization

    Memories of things a child already knows – applying what they learned before. “Balls are made for rolling, so if I can roll the red ball, that means I can roll the blue one too!”

  • Trying out everything

    Toddlers will try out everything several times, continuing to do whatever seems to work and interrupting or retrying things that do not appear to work.

How does Kindergarden support children in their cognitive and sensory development?

1 month to 18 months

Personality development

Sometimes children try to do something they’re not ready for yet, and sometimes they need to learn to accept that they can’t always get their way – it doesn’t take much for toddlers to get frustrated!

Important milestones in the period from 1 month to 18 months
  • Boundaries

    During this stage, children can accept certain boundaries, even though they might still throw a tantrum when they come across something they don’t like.

  • Feelings

    Pleasure, sympathy, dissatisfaction: at this age, children’s feelings start becoming more complex, but fortunately they also find it easier to articulate them.

  • Impatience

    Toddlers have been known to get impatient. They’re still unable to delay their needs at this age (such as physical contact and attention) and look for instant gratification.

  • Self-confidence

    This period is marked by growing self-confidence and shaped by the physical and emotional safety the child experiences. Children demand the attention of the people around them they know and trust.

  • Distrust

    Children can sometimes be distrustful of new settings and new people, which can interfere with their budding self-confidence.

How does Kindergarden support children in their personality development?