Learning to climb and an obsession with chalk! 15 months old

Before the summer holidays I had been regularly taking Monkey to a Tumbletots class. While he loved running around and the singing and dancing and some of the equipment, a lot of the equipment was too advanced for him really. He could not get the idea of climbing on rungs! He’s been able to climb the stairs at home for a while, but mainly on his knees, and if we tried to help him walk the stairs he would a really funny straight leg high kick type climb up the stairs!

Over the summer we have been spending a lot more time at play parks, so I have been encouraging him to climb. Not in a pushy parent type of way (at least I hope not) but I have been guiding his feet onto steps and supporting him from behind to make sure he doesn’t fall while he got the hang of proper climbing! The result has been fantastic. He is now doing so well and shot up a climbing frame with huge steps the other day! I was then a nervous wreck as I was terrified he would fall off one of the open sides but he did well and is also getting much better at coming down the slide, which he loves!

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Aside from climbing, Monkey has a new love. Chalk. He is a bit obsessed with it! When we were on holiday there was a little chalk board on the play area and he loved it and his scribbling really improve – to be actual scribbles rather than just hitting the board like he did initially. On a recent trip to Ikea we bought him a chalk board  and some chalks, which we have put in the conservatory, which has become kind of a play area for him where he can be a bit messy as it’s only old stuff we have in there.

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Even though it is old stuff though we are very much trying to keep the chalk marks on the blackboard, and not on the sofa, rug, table, floor, door, etc. etc. The difficulty with this is that whenever we are in there I am saying ‘No’ all the time as he tests his boundaries. When the weather is ok I let him in the garden with the chalk and he has a bit more of a free rein because, let’s face it, chalk washes off! I don’t know if this confuses the matter for him though? Anyway the one rule is that he is not allowed it into the house so at the conservatory door, if he wants to play in the lounge then he must give mummy the chalk.

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Well, we have had some serious tantrums over the relinquishing of the chalk! He gets so so unhappy and is then looking for it everywhere while crying. No matter how much I try to reason with him and say he can have it in the conservatory but can’t take it with him everywhere he goes, he just doesn’t listen and wails and throws himself on the floor. Most of the time I can distract him with something, though there are times when that takes a lot of effort as he is distracted for a few seconds and then starts thinking about the chalk again! Seriously he is a bit obsessed with the stuff!

So it becomes a battle of willpower and I am not going to give in to him as a) that teaches him that if he pushes hard enough he will get his own way, and b) I really don’t want chalk marks throughout the house! Hopefully the obsessed phase will end soon and he will play with it without getting massively attached to it. I really hope so anyway!

In other news he has discovered a new perspective on the world, by bending over and looking at the view upside down from between his knees, it must be fascinating  as he keeps doing it. Oh and he also loves the blackberry crumble I made using blackberries from Granny’s garden! As you can see in this picture!

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