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  • March 12, 2024 8 min read

    Your newborn's milestones such as giggling, crawling, sitting up, and talking seem distant to you.....but babies grow fast! Milestones are key indicators of where your child is developmentally and plus, they’re fun! It’s important for us to note here that each baby is unique and may develop at different paces. Here's a breakdown of what to expect in your baby's first year.

     

    Month 1

    The first month of life and your gorgeous newborn is already getting familiarized with the big world! As they take everything in, one thing they’re already used to is your voice! Yep that’s right, researchers believe newborns recognize the sounds of their parent’s—particularly mummy’s—voices from birth. You may notice your baby is soothed by the sound of your voice and enjoys your singing (my baby is the only one that does!).

    Newborns recognize the sounds of their mummy’s.

    Your newborn will also react negatively to loud noises that startle them. This is completely normal as reacting to sights and sounds is actually a key milestone in the first month. Another key milestone is displaying innate reflexes such as rooting and sucking, so get the camera ready for that first thumb suck and click away!

    Key Milestones

    • Reacting to sights and sounds
    • Displaying the Moro reflex (often called the startle reflex), Suck reflex and Root reflex (this reflex helps baby find the breast or bottle to being fed)

     

    Month 2

    Already month two, and a whole lot more to look forward to! This month, your baby’s development centers around her relationship with you and other caregivers. Your baby will finally start to recognize your face- about time!! Their eyesight improves by this month, and they can focus on distinguishing features and faces. By month two, they will have an additional way to communicate aside from crying: cooing! And by the end of the second month, you'll see a SMILE! Your baby will begin to intentionally smile at you and it’s such a gorgeous moment for the family.

    Your baby will be able to lift her own head at 2 months old.

    Another exciting key milestone is that your baby will be able to lift her own head. As babies build muscles, they’ll start to gain enough strength to hold their heads up on their own. A great way to help them achieve this is through tummy time and by using tantalizing toys (like our handmade Wee Bean rattle!) as motivation to help your baby learn to lift their head. Babies are naturally attracted to sounds, bright colors and shiny objects. It’s a great bonding experience too!

    Key Milestones

    • Paying attention to faces and recognizing people
    • Cooing
    • Smiling
    • Lifting their own head

     

    Month 3

    Time is just ticking ahead, and a new month brings along new milestones. Month three is all about coordination. Your baby will be connecting sound, sight, and movement. Expect to see your baby tracking you as you move about the room, watching faces closely and even recognizing you from a distance- you’re basically going to have a little spy on your hands!

    The adorable smiles continue especially as they begin to recognize sounds that are familiar to them

    The adorable smiles continue, especially as they begin to recognize sounds that are familiar to them. However, the major milestones this month is grasping objects!! Your baby will start to develop that all-important hand-eye coordination. They will grab and shake toys, showing off their newfound skill. Soon your baby will be able to bring their hands to their mouth and reach for objects with one hand, so you will have to be super vigilant and be on the lookout for no-no’s.

    Key Milestones

    • Connecting sound, sight, and movement
    • Grasping objects

     

    Month 4

    Time stands still for no man or baby in this case! Month four is all about rapid development and a key milestone is imitating. You will have a little mimic on your hands as your baby will be copying sounds, movements, and even facial expressions, showcasing their social and communication skills. Experts say imitation is a form of “social glue”—it builds trust and is vital to the way babies learn. So, chat away with your child and remember to keep those expressions happy!

    The cutest milestone of all at this 4 months old is laughter.

    Another significant milestone is rolling over, but there’s a difference between front-to-back and back-to-front. Some babies can do both right away, while others can’t. Don’t worry though, as all babies develop at a different pace and should be a pro by month seven. They will also begin experimenting with the building blocks of speech, but the cutest milestone of all at this stage is laughter. Get ready for lots of it because babies are hilarious!

    Key milestones

    • Copying sounds, movements, and facial expressions
    • Rolling over
    • Babbling
    • Laughing

     

    Month 5

    So here we are at month five, and you have a little human who is becoming much more expressive, which is an important milestone at this stage. They can go from being loud and boisterous to quiet and calm, you don’t know which one you’re going to get! By this month, they will even begin to smile at the mirror and will absolutely love getting some face time in front of a mirror, don’t we all?

    At 5 months old, they will even begin to smile at the mirror.

    It’s also a great way to calm them down during a crying fit, just give them some mirror time and they will be captivated by their own adorability. They will also become quite the intrepid explorers as they discover the joy of grabbing toes and finding other wiggly, jiggly body parts and start bringing objects to their mouth. You’ll have to be super attentive and ready to snatch away any no-no’s!

    Key milestones

    • Smiling at the mirror
    • Expressing new emotions
    • Refining basic movements

     

    Month 6

    The halfway point has arrived! What an interesting six months you’ve had, so much hard work and a bundle of love! They’ll be able to respond to their own name, take turns in a conversation and even start to string some vowel sounds together, oohs and ahhs galore! They’ll also start moving a lot!

    At 6 months old, your baby will soon be sitting unsupported.

    Your baby will be rolling over competently in both directions. As a parent, you’ll get so much joy from watching these little movements. The big milestone in this month is sitting. Your baby will soon be sitting unsupported, and it’s such a proud moment for mama and papa. 

    Key milestones

    • Responding to their own name
    • Moving… a lot
    • Sitting

     

    Month 7

    This month is all about the eyes- your baby’s vision is improving a lot and allowing for more coordination. Prepare to be impressed with how well your baby is able to reach for toys and a whole host of objects that they probably shouldn’t!  You’ll find yourself diving to get off-limit objects away from your baby as any bright and interesting thing will attract them now that their color vision is stronger.

    Prepare to be impressed with how well your baby is able to reach for toys at 7 months old.

    Plus, their eye control and eye-body coordination are increasingly refined, so they’ll be reaching out for a lot more objects! Another milestone achieved by month seven is the transferring of objects from one hand to another. It sounds simple to us adults, but this simple movement displays serious spatial awareness.

    Key milestones

    • Transferring objects from one hand to another
    • Improving vision

     

    Month 8

    If month seven was all about the eyes, well this month is all about movement! Your baby is going to be on the move, because month eight brings about one of the major milestones that all parents look forward to: crawling! Don’t be alarmed if your baby is not crawling in the expected fashion. Just be patient and let your baby develop in their own special way.

    Your baby will be communicating now more than ever at 8 months old.

    Your baby will also begin to understand object permanence. In simple English, this is the psychological phenomenon that helps folks understand that when something disappears from view, it doesn’t mean that it’s gone forever. Another huge leap that your baby will make is in communication! Your baby will finally say their first words. They’ll be repeating sounds like “bababa” or, very adorably, “mamama.” You’ll find your baby understands simple words like, “no.” What’s more, they’ll begin to use their fingers to point! 

    Key milestones

    • Learning object permanence
    • Crawling
    • Saying first words

     

    Month 9

    Month nine has arrived, and you’re likely marveling at how fast your baby has developed. Your once-immobile newborn is now an avid mover! This month, they add standing to the list of newly acquired skills. Your baby should be able to stand holding on to your hands. You may even witness your baby pulling themselves up using a table as a prop.

    Your baby should be able to stand holding on to your hands at 9 months old.

    Not only has their balance improved, but their dexterity has too! Those jerky arm movements are long gone and babies are now able to wield objects more efficiently. Their improved dexterity might mean banging or shaking toys (or anything else they can get their hands on! Careful!) This baby milestone also indicates increased cognitive function. You may notice your baby beginning to use household objects for their intended purpose. For example, they may mimic drinking out of a cup (or actually do so!).

    Key milestones

    • Standing
    • Improved dexterity

     

    Month 10

    Month 10 is a fun month; your baby is preparing themselves to start walking and this begins with the ‘cruising’ milestone, which involves your baby holding onto you or furniture while walking. Cruising usually occurs a few weeks after your baby can stand, and it's one of the last steps on the journey toward walking independently.

    By month 10, your baby can understand and engage in simple games.

    Another milestone this month is ‘interactive game playing’. By month 10, your baby can understand and engage in simple games such as finding hidden objects, peekaboo or taking things in and out of a container. They will help develop those all-important fine motor skills. Every bit of playtime is also learning time. So, prepare your silly peekaboo face and voice and get ready to embarrass yourself all in the name of development.

    Key milestones

    • Cruising
    • Playing interactive games

     

    Month 11

    Month 11 brings with it the "starting to explore" milestone, fun for the baby but not necessarily for you! Your baby will be on the move and using all those newfound gross motor skills like sitting, crawling, and cruising to start checking everything out. Take steps to babyproof and make sure cleaning supplies, toiletries, and medicine cabinets are well off limits!

    Month 11 brings with it the ‘starting to explore’ milestone.

    They start to understand emotions better and can read and react to your emotional state. This level of communication and interaction deepens as they can use their bourgeoning vocabulary to state what they want and need. It’s so enjoyable to be able to communicate with your child, even in the simplest form.

    Key milestones

    • Starting to explore
    • Developing their distinct personality

     

    Month 12

    Wow……. month 12! You’ve worked hard, and both you and your baby have achieved a lot, so a big well done to you. By this month, your baby’s brain has more than doubled in size! This extra brain power will mean they will have improved their language skills. They should already have a small vocabulary and will be adding to it regularly, and they will be practicing simple gestures like waving bye or shaking their heads. Also, watch out for what you say, because at this stage, they’ll be repeating everything.

    You may witness your baby's first steps at 12 months old.

    So, I guess it’s time to remove all those naughty words out your vocab and keep it PG-13! Another milestone this month and probably the most anticipated……your baby’s first steps!! The last few months have been leading up to this moment from ‘crawling’ to the ‘cruising’. So, get the camera ready to catch the precious moment! They may still need a bit of help or support in the beginning but once they get the hang of it, you’ll have an avid walker on your hands.

    Key milestones

    • Beginning to walk
    • Improving language skills

     

    And just like that your newborn is now 1 year old! The first year of parenting can be so tough and such a big change for you but just remember to take each month as it comes and to enjoy your time with your baby. Don’t be too hard on yourself or worried if your baby hasn’t hit a certain milestone by said point! It will happen…. just have fun, make memories and don’t forget to document all the good stuff!

    We would love to hear some of your milestone memories so please sound off in the comment box below! While you're at that, don't forget to check out The Wee Bean's collection of organic baby clothing, because your little one deserves the best!

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