Why active play is so important for toddlers
Your toddler will become more mobile by the day. Whether it’s cruising around the furniture, taking first steps or walking with greater confidence, movement just gets better and better in the second year. Before you know it, those tentative first steps will become running and jumping. You can help your toddler by getting them to move and walk in different ways – backwards and taking side steps, not just forwards all the time. Dancing is great for this!
In your toddler’s second year, they begin to speak more. From initially communicating with single words, your toddler will start to put them together to make simple, meaningful sentences, such as ‘play me’ and ‘you go’. As toddlers learn and understand language, the more they will listen – and the more they will learn. Take advantage of local toddler groups that have singalong sessions, and teach your child nursery rhymes and songs from your own childhood. Toddlers listen to and mimic speech, so be aware that if you’re tempted to use colourful language in front of them it might get repeated at an inappropriate moment!
With all the development going on, it’s perhaps no surprise that it’s important that they have a varied, balanced diet where every mouthful is nutritious. Iron, calcium and vitamin D are three nutrients which support this stage of your toddler’s development. Iron contributes to normal cognitive development and calcium and vitamin D are needed for normal growth and development of bone in children.
Some good sources of iron for your toddler include lean red meat, eggs, oily fish, green leafy vegetables and beans. Vitamin D is synthesised naturally by the body from sunlight on skin - this is the main source - and it is also found in oily fish, eggs and fortified foods. But, with the UK’s unreliable weather, the Department of Health recommends that toddlers aged between one and four take a supplement of 10 micrograms of vitamin D every day.
As part of a varied, balanced diet, Aptamil Growing Up milks are enriched with iron to support normal cognitive development, vitamin D and calcium for normal bone development and iodine which contributes to the normal growth of children.
During your toddler’s second year, play becomes important. Play is how children learn and acquire life skills such as listening, sharing, problem-solving and social interaction. It is normal for the under-twos to play alone, even in the company of another toddler, who may also be playing alone (it’s called parallel play). Around the age of two, your toddler will become more interested in playing with others.
When you interact with your toddler, you will notice them becoming more assertive and self-aware: they are becoming more independent. Toddlers express what they need and want more clearly – and what they don’t want! Toddlers are now ready to have some control and make decisions for themselves, so give them a choice between, say, two foods and then let them decide how much they eat. Encourage your toddler to choose their own clothes and games too – you’ll help them to express themselves and their own personality, which they’ll do even more after their second birthday.
Aptamil Growing Up milks are tailored to your toddler’s stage of development.
Aptamil with Pronutra+ Growing Up milk 1-2 years contains a unique blend of ingredients nutritionally tailored for your toddler, including iron for normal cognitive development as part of a varied, balanced diet. It comes in a range of formats from powder to ready-to-drink Growing Up milk, including a resealable one-litre pack and a handy 200ml carton for when you are out and about.
Aptamil Profutura Growing Up milk is Aptamil’s most advanced Growing Up milk formulation yet. Inspired by 40 years of breastmilk research, and nutritionally tailored for toddlers from one to two years, it contains specific nutrients to support your toddler, as part of a varied, balanced diet. Aptamil Profutura Growing Up milk contains iodine which contributes to normal growth of children, and iron to support normal cognitive development.
Source: The Huffington Post UK
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