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Are You Baby Smart?

Under Her Little Thumb

My 1-year-old is too young to have the ability to manipulate me.
True But not all parents are aware of this fact: More than a third of them think that 1-year-olds are capable of being manipulative. For example, if a child this age were to turn the TV off and on repeatedly while his parents were watching it, 38 percent of parents believe that the child is likely acting out because he is angry at them. Experts point out, however, that 12-month-olds are simply too young to harbor malicious intentions. They say that such actions are merely a child's way of exploring the world around him.

What this means for you Don't punish your 1-year-old for his behavior in a situation like the one above. Instead, explain to him what's happening to the TV when he pushes the buttons, then divert him with a toy. He's bound to lose interest quickly (children this age have short attention spans) and move on to explore something new.

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