How to get a  toddler to play independently

Ah, the toddler stage. Not so long ago your little peanut was just hanging out, willingly wherever you set him or her. Now… not so much.

Gone are the days of stationary play. Now, it’s off the races to get into anything and everything ALL DAY LONG. It’s exhausting!

Which is probably why you’re here right?  You’re going crazy and just want your toddler to play independently for even just five, uninterrupted minutes!

Don’t worry I got you!

But, first, we need to look at a few things to really understand what play is for a child.

The 3 Major Types of play in child development

‘Play’ can mean many things,  but to help break it down some experts have divided it into three categories- social, independent, and guided play.

Each category has its own benefits, but just like everything in life you can have too much or too little.

Finding balance in your toddlers routine and setting them up to for success requires that they learn each type of play

What is social play in child development?

Social play is exactly what it sounds like, children playing with one another in a social setting (or an adult plays with a child).

What is Independent play? For a toddler to play independently, they have to be left to their own devices. While it’s “easy” to learn social skills for most toddlers it’s 10x harder for them to learn to be self-reliant.

What is Guided play?

When a child engages in guided play they are using props setup by adults that encourage a specific outcome.

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