All toddlers are challenging, but some little people need special instruction manuals. Often, a kid with a high IQ also demonstrates high energy levels, making her even more intense as you try to keep up. You’ll need plenty of support and resources to boost your energy and save your sanity. With creativity and patience, you can meet your brainy toddler's demands head-on to keep everyone happy and safe.
1 Supervise your toddler every second. All toddlers are short on impulse control and long on insatiable curiosity. High-energy, high IQ tots will often put average toddlers to shame, though. These are the kids that seem to go full-throttle during every waking moment. You never know what bright ideas your little one will have and you can be sure he’ll have the energy to carry out his ingenious plans.
2 Childproof your home with a fine-tooth comb. Go through every room with a critical eye, looking for the items and gadgets that will captivate your toddler’s attention. While an average toddler might concentrate on standard mischief, your sharp tot’s attention might include the unexpected like dismantling electronics just to see what’s on the inside.
3 Provide lots of stimulation to engage and encourage your toddler. He may find standard toddler toys boring, so you might need to get creative. Age recommendations for toys serve two purposes – one is for safety and the other is as a guideline for age appropriateness. Don’t give toys with small parts to your toddler to make sure that he doesn’t put the pieces in his mouth, but as long as a toy doesn’t have small parts, your little guy might enjoy toys designed for slightly older kids because they’ll give him a bigger challenge. If you do want to try toys with small parts, let him play under your watchful eye.
4 Talk to your toddler to explain concepts and ideas. Keep vocabulary simple, but go ahead and give a brief overview of the solar system, electricity or anything else that she wants to hear about. If you sense more interest, move into hands-on lessons to help your toddler visualize. For example, if you want to start an appreciation for astronomy, rattle off the names of the planets and then head outdoors on a clear night to show your little one the moon, stars and any planets that are within sight -- Venus, perhaps.
5 Stay active and creative to expand your toddler’s world. Take him places that will spark ideas and creativity. A museum, a planetarium, the zoo, a botanical garden or the beach are just a few places you can hang out to encourage and introduce new concepts and ideas.
6 Teach limits with your high-energy, high IQ toddler just like you’d teach them to any little one. The key is consistency and loving firmness. Your little one might need extra supervision because you never know what will pop into her brain. When she crosses the line and does something off limits, tell her not to touch or not to do that and redirect her to something else that she can do instead.
- Don’t be surprised if your toddler tunes you out when he’s concentrating. Jana Murphy, author of “The Secret Lives of Toddlers: A Parent’s Guide to the Wonderful, Terrible, Fascinating Behavior of Children Ages 1 to 3,” tells parents that toddlers with high IQs may concentrate so intently that they block out surrounding noises. Reach out and touch your toddler when he’s concentrating on something to bring him back to earth.
- The Secret Lives of Toddlers: A Parent's Guide to the Wonderful, Terrible, Fascinating Behavior of Children Ages 1 to 3; Jana Murphy
- Nurturing our Families: Nurturing Our Spirited Children
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