Q: Is it OK to start teaching our 1-year-old how to play independently? He screams and cries when I put him in any type of enclosure if he can't get “free.” Is there a method to teach him how to play by himself for at least a little bit? It seems I am following him around the house all day so he can't get into trouble, or hurt himself or damage furniture etc. We have our house “baby-proofed,” but he is very creative with the things he likes to get into.
A: First, you don't “teach” a 1-year-old to play independently. They begin playing independently, on their own, as soon as they begin moving around. Second, you've told me (without realizing that you've told me) that your son is already playing independently. You write, “He is very creative with the things he likes to get into.”