Screen time benefits, talking and bedtime routines

Screen time benefits

Your little one can benefit from using your smartphone or tablet if you use them as an opportunity to engage your child. As a guideline, limit screen time for under two years old to less than 15 minutes a day and use it for social activities like flicking through photo albums or education activities or games.

Follow these tips for beneficial screen time with your tot:

  • Try out educational games before giving them to your child and then play them with her.

  • Choose apps designed to boost development.

  • Relate what she sees on screen to the real world, explaining any differences.

Screen time can be an opportunity to engage with your child. (Image: Getty Images)

Talking

Amazed by your little chatterbox's ever growing vocabulary? You're not alone. From 18 months onwards, kids learn on average two to five new words a day. You can keep encouraging toddler talking by chatting directly to the, singing nursery rhymes, reading and telling stories.

All children develop at different ages and stages, but as a guide most two year olds can put two words together and correctly pronounce the sounds "P," "M," "H," "W," "N" and "B."

If you're concerned with your child's speech or communication development, it's a good idea to see a GP, paediatrician or child and family health nurse.

Bedtime routine

Most 22-month-olds need around 11 to 12 hours of sleep overnight, plus a day nap of about 1.5 to 3 hours, for a total of about 13 to 14 hours of sleep per day.

By this age your little one will hopefully have a well-established, relatively simple bedtime routine – which looks like, bath, pyjamas, short calm play and/ or story time – and will be able to fall asleep on their own.

Does your child have a security blanket or "blankie"? A security blanket is a soft, warm and cuddly item which smells familiar and provides them comfort. The "blankie" is an attachment object and can help your toddler fall back to sleep or feel safe, especially when they are sleeping in an unfamiliar place, like daycare.

If your child doesn't already have a "blankie" or snuggle toy they are attached too, now could be the time to introduce one.