This page shows you the relevant topics for this stage. The developmental summary outlines what’s going on for baby and how parents and whānau can support their child’s learning and behaviour. The individual tiles explore each topic in more depth.  

Developmental summary

Child Developmental Topics

13 to 18 months

Becoming more independent

By this stage a child has realised they’re a separate ‘being’ from their parents and may want to do things for themselves and in their own way.

13 to 18 months

Enjoying books

During this period a child is likely to enjoy books, and may begin attending to stories more — but that usually depends on how much ‘book time’ they’ve had already.

13 to 18 months

Experiencing emotional challenges

During this stage, temper tantrums will be common. With limited ability to say how they’re feeling, toddlers will instead show their feelings with their behaviour.

13 to 18 months

Learning everyday

Every experience a child has is a learning experience and the best learning still happens when it involves more of their senses at a time.

13 to 18 months

Talking and listening

At this stage a child can understand more and more of what’s said to them — much more than they can say. And the more words they hear, the more they’ll learn.

13 to 18 months

Using big muscles

During this stage toddlers are likely to be very active. Parents can expect them to be moving faster and further away from dad and mum. They’ll be walking, running, reaching higher and trying to climb.

13 to 18 months

Using hands and fingers well

By now, children can efficiently use the pincer grasp, where their thumb and index finger are used in opposition.

13 to 18 months

Enjoying music

A child this age will enjoy any form of singing or musical activity, such as waiata-ā-ringa (action songs), rhymes and fingerplay. And the more physical it is, the better.

Maori language content 13 to 18 months

13 to 18 months

Young parents

Young parents can face particular joys and challenges whether because of their own life's path, or because of the attitudes they encounter from the wider society.