It’s not quite yet time to buy backpacks and pencil cases featuring whichever talking animal the kids love these days, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t think about signing Baby up for a class. There are different classes available for toddlers that you may want to consider – classes can give Baby some fun things to do during the day while also teaching him important skills, and giving him the chance to spend some time with other children his own age.
Aquatic programs for infants and toddlers
There are a lot of things that factor into keeping toddlers safe around water, including constant supervision, keeping pool covers secure, and updating drains to make sure they don’t pose a suction hazard. Water safety classes and swim classes can sometimes be part of the equation, too, depending on the toddler. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children who are older than one year may be at a lower risk of drowning if they’ve had formal swim instruction.
A toddler won’t necessarily learn to swim in these classes. Rather, he will be exposed to water and taught different water-related skills, like kicking in the water, picking up toys from underwater, and maybe getting his face wet, among other things. Just as importantly, you’ll learn valuable safety lessons for supervising children near water. Talk to your toddler’s doctor or other healthcare provider about whether or not these classes are a good idea.
You mean Baby needs to take a class to learn how to play?
Toddlers need playtime like they need their veggies. Physical activity helps them develop muscle control and motor skills necessary for things like turning the pages of books, climbing, stacking things, picking objects up and putting them down, and jumping or running – to name just a few of many. Play classes, sometimes called introductory motor skill classes, give toddlers the opportunity to work on all kinds of different skills in a social environment. Baby will get physical exercise, and you’ll get a chance to bond with him, as well as help and watch him advance and learn new skills.
The idea of ten toddlers banging on tambourines can strike terror into any adult’s heart. But a music class is a great opportunity for your little one to dance, sing, clap, tap, and play with small instruments while watching other toddlers doing the same. There still might be some tambourine banging, but a class will provide structure and age-appropriate stimulation. It could help reinforce language skills, too.
Ultimately, you may decide that you want to keep Baby home until he needs to step foot into a classroom, or you might feel a toddler class seems too fun to pass up. While he is this age, it’s your decision to make if Baby goes to class. For now, back-to-school season only begins if you want it to.
“Sun and Water Safety Tips.” AAP. American Academy of Pediatrics, May 3 2016. Web.
Clay Jones. “Infant and Toddler Swimming Programs: Are They Safe and Effective?” ScienceBasedMedicine. Science-Based Medicine, July 5 2013. Web.
“Play Activities to Encourage Motor Development in Child Care.” eXtension. eXtension, Sep 8 2015. Web.
“Perceptual and Motor Development Domain.” cde.ca.gov. California Department of Education, Jan 12 2016. Web.