How to encourage junior’s first steps — in 10 steps
- Tempt them with an interesting toy placed on a sturdy/heavy chair or sofa.
- Encourage them to pull themselves up to reach it.
- Standing up is often followed by a sudden bottom-plonk back down, so stay close by. (Luckily, diapers provide quite a bit of padding!)
- If your child is standing confidently holding onto furniture, try holding their hand to see if they’d like to try walking.
- Alternatively, you could encourage them to “cruise” along holding on to fixed, stable furniture.
- A push-along toy can help them start to move away from furniture.
- Smile and give lots of praise and cuddles for all their attempts, successful or not.
- When you think they might be ready you can kneel a couple of feet away from them and call them to you, holding out your arms and smiling with encouragement.
- Once they’re walking fairly confidently make sure you re-check your home to make it safe from obstacles as well as things that were not in reach before. Have a look at our child proofing action plan to ensure you’ve covered all bases.
- For ideas to keep them active now they’re mobile, check out our 12-18-month-old’s activity planner.
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