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Am I playing enough with my 18mth old?

(13 Posts)
MummyElk Sun 06-Sep-09 10:29:19

She's great fun, good at playing on her own, very imaginative, and has a normal attention span for her age i would think, so flits from toy to toy...
Because she's good at entertaining herself, sometimes I'm aware that we don't really do very much during the day? For this i mean when we stay in, we are generally out and about quite a lot too.
Do you think I should be doing finger paints/play doh/drawing etc with her?
I'm 12 wks pg so I think maybe my energy levels are through the floor, hence the worry that i'm leaving her to it. the other day CBeebies was on for so long i realised the programmes sort of repeat themselves!! blush shock
oh help pls don't tell me i'm a bad mum, some suggestions of activities would be much more appreciated

mitfordsisters Sun 06-Sep-09 15:02:39

I have an 18 month old ds, and I worry about this a bit too. He loves playing with water - try this - either in the back yard, with washing up bowls and cups etc., or in the bathroom.

Stories is good if you feel tired, and drawing. Also dancing - you don't have to dance too - can do the hand jive with a teddy if tired!!

I read somewhere that 30 minutes intense focus a day in terms of play and interaction will serve them well. So if you are doing that then fret ye not!

bamboobutton Sun 06-Sep-09 15:12:25

i feel like this too. 18mo ds is just so active and has a pretty short attention span too.

ive given up playing with him too much as he just isn't interested in me[sob] he won't sit for stories, runs off if i try and do songs, chews the crayons when we try drawing and isn't interested in building blocks.

he will hapilly spend hours on his own in the garden filling up the empty paddling pool with mudhmmgrin or comitting crimes against snails.
he does like chasing games and tickling games and being sprayed with the hoseblush

MovingOutOfBlighty Sun 06-Sep-09 15:15:16

Have the same with 23mth DS. We go out and about so much and I play with him when out, but back at home I find the whole thing just doesn't seem to work.
Bricks last 2 mins, stories get ripped etc.

You are not alone!

Wanderingsheep Sun 06-Sep-09 15:36:15

I wouldn't feel guilty! If she's happy playing on her own then that's good and will get her to become more independant.

Perhaps try doing some painting or playdough as she will probably enjoy it. Are there any groups that you can take her to that do messy play, so that she gets the advantage of painting without you having to clear the mess, but you can still sit with her.

Maybe sit her on your knee for a few minutes before bedtime and sing a few nursery rhymes.

MummyElk Mon 07-Sep-09 07:58:00

Morning all - phew thank you!! Glad i'm not alone - and good suggestions
bamboobutton i like the image of crimes against snails! grin
she does love water and the garden so yes, whilst the weather is ok we'll go outside more. my DH suggested painting yesterday too, he just said make that the aim of the day and then even though it's only 20 minutes, it'll be more fun.
Ripping books etc sounds very familiar!
There was a great group i took her to on a Monday which did lots of messy play but i now work Mondays, so she has a nice active time at the childminders instead. I'll look for one at the end of the week.
Anyway thank you for all your responses, most helpful.

Paranoid1stTimer Mon 07-Sep-09 13:51:23

Hi MummyElk I was just about to post almost the same question. My LO is nearly 18 months and I have the same issues here. He loves to play by himself when we're at home together and sometimes if I try to join in he gets very cross n frowns at me as if to say "I was doing something there Mummy, n you just came along n spoiled everythin!!!" ha ha.

BambooButton that is hilarious. LOL'd at your post. Brilliant and exactly the truth!

danthe4th Mon 07-Sep-09 14:05:32

Try putting a childrens cd on instead of having the tv on.

MummyElk Mon 07-Sep-09 19:13:54

ooh CD is a good one, we sing all the time in the car, no reason not to do it athome. Thanks Dan4th!
glad am not alone P1T!! hard not to over analyse it isn't it.
Am going to try extra hard this week to do something nice with her every day, anyone interested in joining me in a CouldTryHarder thing then happy to share ideas/experiences.
having written it down, it does look like a boring idea though blush so completely fine if no-one does!!!

thesecondcoming Tue 08-Sep-09 00:15:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

elkiedee Tue 08-Sep-09 00:29:56

How many days a week do you work and how many do you have with her?

I went back to work full time when DS1 was 10 months and am now coming towards the end of my maternity leave, DS2 is 7 months. I try to get out to a group or something else at least once a day, usually in the afternoon, and similarly at weekends we usually try to get out somewhere every day.

Sadly DS1 (now 2 and 4 months) has turned into a bit of a TV addict at home - one reason for going out is that it cuts out hours on end of CBeebies without having a fight about it (dp and I don't really see eye to eye on this either).

However, DS1 after a phase of not being interested in stories has also started to love having books read to him, by both of us and also on CD - I've also put our children's CD story collection, and a few borrowed from the library, onto my Ipod. Playing music is another possibility - get her to dance. Our DS1 likes to listen to recordings of songs he recognises from hearing his dad sing them to him.

But the playing on her own thing is good too - that will be helpful when new baby arrives and you're at home, then you will need to find groups etc that you can take them both to - probably ones chosen to suit the older child.

elkiedee Tue 08-Sep-09 00:30:18

I'm sure you're a great mum by the way.

thesecondcoming Tue 08-Sep-09 00:40:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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