Grow, Baby, Grow…
All babies develop in the same order but at completely different rates. One seven-month-old might be crawling around and chattering madly. Another might be playing silently on his playmat. This is all pretty normal.
How your baby is growing
Your baby’s everyday life affects how her brain develops. Lots of love, attention and interesting experiences do wonders for her brain growth, learning and development.
Two to six months: Your baby’s eyesight is really improving. She begins to connect what she sees with what she hears, tastes and feels. By watching how you react to her emotions and by seeing you express your feelings, she’s starting to recognise when she feels happy, sad, excited or fearful.
Six to nine months: She’s developing ideas about who she is. She’s also working out the difference between parents, caregivers, strangers, adults and children. She has positive and negative emotions and knows how to express them. She can let you know when she wants help. By nine months, a growth spurt in her brain means she can make associations between what she sees, hears, tastes and feels.
Nine to 12 months: Your baby’s ability to experience different emotions and moods has developed a lot. She’s better able to entertain and reassure herself with familiar objects and people. She’ll be getting ready to crawl and walk, and will be able to move away from things that upset or annoy her. She might hang off your leg to steady herself. She’ll deliberately use her hands to pick up things and drop them. She can work out what’s upside down and what’s the right way around. She’ll begin to understand simple expressions such as ‘Where’s the dog?’ and ‘Pass it to me’, and will begin using gestures to communicate what she wants or means.
Babies learn by watching and copying people. They can remember a lot for a surprisingly long time – in fact, they can watch an adult do something a few times, for only 20 seconds, and remember how to do it four weeks later.
What your baby might be doing
In their first 12 months, babies develop many of the foundations that underpin speech and language development. All babies develop at a different rate. Your baby might reach some of the milestones later. Don’t worry, babies nearly always catch up. But you know your baby best – if you’re ever worried about your child’s development, get professional advice.
By four months, your baby can:
- lift his head up 90 degrees when lying on his tummy
- laugh out loud
- follow an object in an arc about 15 cm above his face for 180 degrees (from one side to the other).
By six months, he can:
- keep his head level with his body when pulled to a sitting position
- say ‘ah goo’ or similar vowel consonant combinations.
By nine months, he can:
- work to get to a toy out of reach
- look for a dropped object.
By 12 months, he can:
- walk holding on to furniture.
Did you Know?
Your baby loves to keep you guessing about what she’ll do next! Some weeks, you might witness amazing changes, and then they stop. Sometimes your baby might even go backwards a bit. This is all normal.