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Toddler reluctant to try new things

  1. #1
    emilyc is offline Registered User
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    Toddler reluctant to try new things

    My son, now 21 mths, is very reluctant to try new things.

    In the playgroup, which he has been going for 3 mths, he just watches others " do things", he does not follow the instructor. Eg, instructor asks all kids to put the bucket on their heads, pretending it is a hat, then put their arms through, and pretend to pick berries etc etc. While all other kids follow, or try to keep up with the instructor, my son just watches and would NOT do a thing, not even the slightest intent to do so.

    My own guess is he is afraid of trying new things being NOT confident if he can do it well.

    What can I do to encourage more responsive actions? How can I get my son to be more adventurous and not afraid of failure?

    Tks

    Rgds

    e

  2. #2
    hunhun is offline Registered User
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    Have you tried doing those activities with your toddler at home? Maybe he is not comfortable in doing things in a big group yet. Don't worry, he will in time. :cheerlead

  3. #3
    emilyc is offline Registered User
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    No, we have not done the activities at home. Every time, the instructor improvises with new props.

    Anything I can do to encourage him to join in the play?

    rgds

    e

  4. #4
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    alannaj is offline Registered User
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    My son was very much like this (he's now almost 3) and I really worried about him. I tried to push him into things to no avail, and worried he was going to turn out being antisocial. I talked to friends and decided it wan't a case where increased group exposure was going to help. We just kept going along to the groups and I let him go at his own pace.

    Eventually, he suddenly decided to join in. For him, it was about being an introverted personality, and just not quite being at the developmental stage to do some things (although other things he was way ahead). I think just give it time and don't worry too much about it. One day he'll just join in and surprise you and it will be all the more enjoyable for having waited.

    Alanna

  5. #5
    kidsgames is offline Registered User
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    toddler's play appears to be influenced by a variety of factors. For instance, toddler's interactions with peers are related to how they interact with their parents. Two-year-olds who often play the games at home with parents or the other family members are more likely to engage in social play and resolve conflicts with peers. So play age-appropriate toys and games (It's better to search some games with play instructions, it will make the play much easier.) with your child at home can support the development of social play and peer interaction skills.

  6. #6
    Neha is offline Banned
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    why dont u do the things the instructor is telling holding his hands , u ask him to follow u that will be much easier for him. anyway every child is different, our 17 month doesn't follow what the instructor says or does he does whatever he wants to but i hold him and make him do atleast some of the things the instructor does and after doing it for about 3 months he is doing it himself now so u need to be patient

    best of luck

  7. #7
    loupou is offline Baby Guru
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    Some kids are more shy, don't like to join in as much. So, you could just accept that this is how he is for a while, and withdraw him from a "formal" play group. Maybe just take him to playing play groups where the kids mess around by themselves and the mums watch to keep them safe and try to have conversations among themselves.

    The other possibility is to do it yourself, which may encourage him "Hey, mama is having fun flapping her arms and acting like a bird/ putting a bucket over her head - maybe I'll try it too".

    Please remember that imaginative play does not happen until a bit later. So, "pretending to pick berries" is kind of meaningless for many 21 month old, especially if they have never actually picked berries by themselves or seen it done.

    What sort of play do you do w/ him at home or outside? If he starts to do things like drag a piece of furniture around, climb things, or pick up leaves or stones and dirt, do you say "No, no, no dangerous! Dirty!" or, do you encourage him to go for it (while watching him carefully to make sure he doesn't get hurt).

    All kids have their different characters and so each parent has his or her different burden. My kids loved to try new things, which made it much scarier for me in terms of physical safety, and also I worried because they were not shy about barging through a kid who was a bit slow to go down a slide or something. I worried they would turn into rough-neck bullies and thrill seeking teenagers. They are not yet teenagers, but they do take turns and act politely now - which shows that the child they are as toddlers can be molded a bit.

    So, I would recommend being patient and also think hard about whether the "play group" you are sending him to is the right one for him now.
    Last edited by loupou; 04-18-2008 at 10:54 AM.

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