Q. My 19-month-old loves to play "pick up the sippy cup." He drops it from his high chair, I retrieve it, and he drops it again. And again, and again. What gives with this annoying game?
A. Not only is dropping his cup fun to your toddler, it's actually a sign that he's developmentally right on target, says pediatric psychologist Lynne Kenney, PsyD, in Scottsdale, Arizona. There are several possible explanations: He's learning the concept of cause and effect and wondering what Mommy will do when his cup hits the floor; he's just trying to tell you he's done with it; or he's simply eager to interact with you. Whatever the reason, there's no denying that the drop-the-cup act gets old fast. "I recommend taking part in the 'volley' twice," says Dr. Kenney. "That means picking it up and putting it back on the high chair -- while telling him not to throw his cup -- two times. The third time it happens, take it away." Don't make a big deal of it, though. If you get worked up, he'll see he can get a reaction out of you and may want to continue.
Originally published in the February 2009 issue of Parents magazine.
All content on this Web site, including medical opinion and any other health-related information, is for informational purposes only and should not be considered to be a specific diagnosis or treatment plan for any individual situation. Use of this site and the information contained herein does not create a doctor-patient relationship. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.