In the first year of life, a child develops surprisingly intensively: it is amazing how much new things he learns in such a short period! But he cannot do without the help of an adult. Even a skill as simple as getting off a bed or other high surface requires training under the careful guidance of an adult.
The ability to get off a bed or other surface that rises above the floor will be needed by a child when he not only crawls confidently, but also knows how to at least stand with support. It is quite difficult for a kid to master this skill on his own. The fact is that children about a year old still have no idea about the danger of falling to the floor from a bed or sofa. If he, being at a height, sees something interesting on the floor, he acts logically from his point of view: he turns to the object and begins to move in its direction. Having reached the edge, he continues to move, and this leads to a fall. Moreover, the child falls head first, and the imperfect movements of the handles are not yet able to provide sufficiently reliable protection during such a "flight" and not too soft "landing".
Therefore, the child must be taught to get out of bed in a safe way that is accessible to him, but not too logical from his point of view, i.e. having previously turned over on the tummy and hanging the legs from the edge of the bed. Like other motor skills, the descent skill is not formed immediately, but in several stages.
Primary mastering of a skill
To teach a child to get out of bed, first select the correct "simulator": the surface from which the child will descend should not be too high, maximum to the baby's waist. It is even better if the edge of the surface is at such a height that the child can easily throw the leg. It is also better to choose a bed with a soft edge so that the child does not experience the discomfort of sliding his stomach over a hard corner.
To begin with, perform this action with the child together, using your hands, directing his movements and accompanying them with a verbal description of something like the following:
- Now you and I will go down to the floor, waiting for us there … (bear, doll, car).
- Lie on your tummy and hang your legs from the bed. Lean on the handles.
- Try to reach the floor with your foot. Got it? Put on the second leg.
- Well done! You did it! You got out of bed yourself!
Joint dismounting will have to be practiced more than once, until the child understands the algorithm of actions, and his body gets used to performing this sequence.
When you are convinced that the child, without the help of your hands, performs the entire sequence of actions, allow him to get off on his own, reminding the algorithm of execution in words and insuring in case the skill that has not yet been formed fails. When you make sure that the child confidently and calmly gets out of bed correctly, you can no longer accompany his actions with words. Gradually, the baby will be able to climb off higher surfaces, first under the supervision of an adult, and then completely independently.
This method of descent is good in that it ensures the safety of the child: even if the baby cannot stay on the surface of the bed, he will simply slide smoothly to the floor without receiving bruises or other injuries.