How many of us are desperate for some great activities for our kids for fall and winter temps that are coming? Today I am talking all about the best activities for 14 month old, but honestly this is hopefully a round up of activities for all the toddler mamas who need some help staying sane this year!
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Activities for 14 Month Old
I can not believe that school is starting back up in just a few short weeks! It seems like summer flew by this year and before we know it those cooler temps will be creeping in (which would be fantastic right now as we are under a heat advisory!).
As my big kids go off to school, I’m starting to think of some fun activities for Goldie to keep her busy and spend some quality time together. I thought this would be a great opportunity to share with you fellow toddler Mamas some great ideas.
While Goldie is turning 2 years old, I plan on focusing this post on fun activities for our young toddlers (14 months+). Although, these are great ideas for any aged toddler!
Congratulations! You made it to your baby’s first birthday and things are just about to get REAL fun! You’ve mastered the sleepless nights, reflux, colic, and diaper blowouts. But now, just when you thought you’ve got it all figured out, your little guy has started moving and before you know it swimming in your dog’s water bowl.
While I know water play is a fun way to cool off, I don’t think you quite had that in mind when you found them playing in the dog’s water.
Our little ones are changing so quickly and each day they develop new skills. I’ll go over some of the fun developmental milestones that are happening during the 13-15 month range and how you can pair different activities for their needs.
Please keep in mind that I am not a developmental psychologist or expert in the field. These are just a general overview of expected developmental milestones for the age range. They may happen sooner or later. Every little one develops at a different pace and there is no one size fits all. Please don’t compare your child’s progress to another.
I know it can be so hard but, if you have a concern about your child’s development, please reach out to your healthcare provider or local “Parents as Teachers” (this is a great resource available for local STL friends through your school district).
Gross Motor Skills
Babies learn to walk anywhere from 9 months to 18 months. Your little one may not be walking yet and that is okay! On the flipside, you may have a toddler who is running around the living room, climbing stairs, and keeping up with other young children in the household.
Most toddlers at this stage can pull themselves to standing and cruise. Whatever their activity level is, it is imperative to ensure they are in a safe place for their activity. There will be lots of bumps and bruises as they learn how to move about.
Fine Motor Skills
Toddlers at this age are extremely curious. They are constantly examining items and looking at everything around them. You may notice that your little one can wave hello or goodbye, or point to the cat or dog.
They should have mastered the pincer grasp to pick up food and may be able to bring utensils to their mouth but not necessarily able to pick up food with the utensil without assistance. Your 13 month old may also love books and love turning the pages of the books.
Of course you still may be reading the page as it is being turned, but it is the thought that counts! They also may love handing you different toys and books or placing smaller toys into baskets and dumping the toys back out.
When Walker was around 14 months old he loved to help unload the washing machine. With assistance, your toddler can help with some basic chores around the house to further develop these fine motor skills.
You may have already heard those magical first words “Mama”. Okay, who are we kidding, usually the first word goes to “Dada.” My husband would spend so much time with our kids trying to get them to say “Dada” first.
It was always a game to see what their first word would be and since “Mama” is harder to say, it was almost never that! Most younger toddlers are babbling and can say simple words like “dada, baba, mama.”
They may also imitate other sounds that they hear. So if you sing “old Macdonald had a farm, eieio”, don’t be surprised if you hear your 14 month old baby imitate “eieio.” They’ll be saying new words before you know it!
By 15 months old your little one should be able to understand about 120 words! They won’t have the vocabulary to say it quite yet, but they can understand it. So when you say “No” and they smile and do the thing you said not to do anyway, it isn’t from lack of understanding. You can blame that stubbornness on Dad!
Speaking of stubbornness, you may catch a glimpse of those tantrums you hear so much about in the terrible twos. During this young toddlerhood stage, your little one is their own person and has their own opinions on what they want and need.
They want to do everything on their own but may be limited by communication to get their point across which leads to a meltdown out of frustration. Eventually, they will develop those skills to help communicate better and you’ll get a hand for what they’re trying to tell you.
You may also notice that your 14 month old babies have stranger danger and separation anxiety. This is all completely normal behavior. They long to be close to you, within eyesight or able to still hear you. While I love the extra snuggles, sloppy kisses, and hugs, I know that this stage can be so difficult!
My heart breaks anytime I need to step away when one of my kids needs me. So if daycare drop off doesn’t go well, I feel you! This is why routines and explaining the routine is so important at this age. Before you leave, be sure to tell them what is happening. “I’m going to be dropping you off to play with Grandma, but I’ll be right back.”
Activities for 14 Month Old
Now that we’ve had a breakdown of some of the developmental milestones happening at this stage, let’s talk about toddler activities! If you have ever gotten together with another friend who has a similar aged child as you, you’ll notice that at a year old and until they reach about 3 years old, the play is mainly solitary or parallel play, that is there is no interaction between the toddlers.
Despite the lack of interaction, your little one is still learning important social cues through play in real life. In fact, learning through play is key in developing those gross motor, fine motor, speech, and cognitive skills.
You don’t need a lot of toys or new things to entertain your little one. Oftentimes, the box the toy came in is the most played with item. A great way to get your little one involved and entertained is by focusing on simple and everyday tasks and materials. Of course, there are always items that are a good splurge (hello Nugget couch).
Activities to Encourage Cruising
Encourage those gross motor skills by allowing your little one to cruise around the house.
For babies who are walking, a great way to do this is to provide them with a push toy. There are tons of different styles and varieties. However, no matter how fancy the push toy, Goldie always seems to love to go for the kitchen chairs.
A simple way to transform your kitchen chairs into a push toy is to just add sliders to the bottom of the chairs and boom, automatic push toy! For those of you who have a Nugget, the triangle pillows can also be used as a great push toy.
If your little one isn’t quite cruising yet they may have a hard time moving the chair. If they are standing on their own and pulling to stand, a great solution to this is to try rearranging pieces of furniture close together to encourage them to cruise. This is a simple activity that can be easily accommodated for various activity levels and does not take a lot of time or resources to set up.
Now you may be saying, “But Arin, my little one isn’t standing yet, let alone walking.” Good news, I’ve got you and your little covered to encourage them to cruise. You will need a few materials for this though.
- Step 1, gather some painters tape.
- Step 2, gather 4 separate gallon size plastic Ziploc bags.
- Step 3, find various sensory materials to fill the plastic bags.
Some ideas that I have used include, easter grass, water beads, cheerios, oil/water/food coloring, finger paint. Each bag will contain different sensory experiences and different textures. Once you’ve filled the sensory bags, tape them to the floor in a circle or semicircle.
Your little one will be able to scoot or cruise from one sensory experience to the next. Not only is this a great sensory activity, but the best part is that it is also a mess-free sensory activity! If that doesn’t entice your little one, a ball pit or tunnel is also a good idea to encourage cruising.
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Number 3 above is the Air fort – we have this and LOVE IT. You can read a full review here.
Sensory Play Activities for 14 month old
There are lots of activities that can be explored with sensory play. Sensory exploration is key for developing cognitive skills which combine the senses of taste, touch, smell, vision, and hearing. These observations and skills gained will help with problem-solving skills later in life.
Block play may sound basic, but these small toys pack a big punch and help with hand-eye coordination, language, and fine motor skills. You can find basic wooden blocks, cardboard blocks, or my personal favorite magnetic tiles. Try talking about what you are building, seeing, and feeling with the various colors, shapes, and sizes. Little hands will love knocking over your towers you create together.
Some great activities for 14 month old for those hot summer days is some water play. For inside water play, make sure you place a shower curtain liner under the tub anytime you anticipate a mess!
You can try filling a storage tub up with soap and water and encourage your little one to wash his or her baby dolls or plastic animals. Really anything from your child’s toy bin that can get wet can be “washed.” Heck, I used to encourage my kids to do the dishes. Now it takes more coaxing.
Another great sensory idea is taking an empty toilet paper roll or paper towel roll and taping multiple rolls to the wall. From there you can have your little one drop pom poms through the roll into a basket on the floor. This is a great game for independent play.
Alternatively, if your little one isn’t quite mobile yet, you can sit them in their high chair and provide them with an oatmeal container. Cut holes in the top of the oatmeal container and encourage them to push the pom poms through the openings. As they get older you can color code the openings or add different shapes as shape sorters.
Your little artists may also get a kick out of creating finger and foot painting with edible paints (think whipped cream and food coloring). Or, you can provide them with tissue paper painting.
Grab those tissue papers you have lying around from old present bags and tear them into smaller pieces. Provide your little one with a bowl of water and a paintbrush and show them how they can paint the tissue paper on a glass window or door. This is a great rainy day activity that is no fuss and is easily cleaned up.
Now nothing beats a good old fashioned sensory bin. It’s the little things in life that make such an impact. You can grab whatever you have on hand: beans, oatmeal, jello, pasta, rice, shaving cream and allow your little one to explore the different ways the various materials feel, smell, or taste. My kids always have the best time with these easy bins.
Throw in a wooden spoon, some scoopers, and bowls for a pouring station. Or throw in some toy animals, dinosaurs, and edible sand (crushed up graham crackers) for a different experience. If you prefer, you can always make your own sensory bottles with oil, water, and food coloring.
There are so many different ideas that don’t take a long time to set up and provide endless hours of entertainment.
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Activities for 14 month old to Encourage Language Development
We love music in our house. One of the best ways to encourage speech is to sing and play music. You can teach your little one different nursery rhymes or go with something more contemporary.
One of the best things about this is you can also break out into a full on dance party. Watch your little one light up when the music comes on and shake his or her booty! So you may not be much of a dancer but the main thing is that you are having fun!
Utilizing your local library is also a huge win! Explore different books and spend time together reading and going over different words and phrases. When communicating with your little one, make sure you respond to their babbles and use full sentences. This will encourage language development and your little one’s hard work will pay off before you know it.
Imaginative play is also a great tool for helping with language and communication. Give your child a telephone and pretend to call Grandma or Grandpa. Set up a restaurant and pretend to order off a menu. Sometimes the best game you can play is one that mimics your everyday life.
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I hope this provides you some great ideas to get you started with your little girl or guy. What I love about all of these activities is that they can be easily adapted to older kids to include siblings and don’t require any special toys as you can always use what you have on hand.
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Hopefully this helped you find the best activities for 14 month old that you will love! If you are looking for more fun things to do with your kids find me on Instagram (@arinsolange) and if you have any questions leave them in the comments below!