Blue eyed baby

A Mother’s Guide To Understanding Baby Development

From the moment of conception, we as mothers want to find out as much as we can about our child’s development. From the zygote phase to the terrible twos, we have an intrinsic need to know what our babies should be achieving next, what the next phase is going to be. We watch baby development like a hawk because that is one of the joys of motherhood: seeing our babies reach their milestones.

Always remember as you go on this journey with your baby that all babies grow and reach developmental milestones at different times. Some babies start teething at six months and others at eleven months. Don’t panic if your little one is not hitting the milestones at the prescribed timings.

Continue reading to for some things to look out for to help you to better understand your baby’s development.

A Mother's Guide To Understanding Baby Development

Newborns – Move, See, Hear

At the beginning of a baby’s life, these are the things that you will be concentrating on to measure your baby’s developmental milestones. As a newborn, it’s all about cuddling, sleeping, and feeding. At about one to two months, your baby becomes more alert and at two to three months your baby will understand that voices and faces go together, especially mummy and daddy’s voices.

Months 3 To 4 – Communicates And Bonds With Others

From three to four months your baby is learning to communicate using their emotions. Month four to five is very special because bonding with you becomes very important. Also grabbing their feet and objects become playtime for them.

Your baby starts to work out who he/she is and who other people are at five to six months. He/she will start smiling or frowning dependent on their mood. He/she can move their body more and will start rolling. You’ll notice that everything goes straight into his/her mouth because that is how babies learn, by touch and taste.

Months 6 To 7 – Interactions With Others

Their imagination comes alive at about six to seven months and he/she starts to remember things like their favourite toy or people. He/she also becomes aware of how you are feeling by your tone of voice and your facial expressions. The babbling increases at this time and he/she starts using gestures to communicate like turning their head away if they don’t want to eat.

Months 7 To 8 – On The Move

Months seven to eight is when your baby may start crawling to find out more about this world he/she lives in. By now they can sit up on their own and can pull themselves up onto their knees. And copying what you do can become a great playtime activity.

Baby Climbing sandpit

Months 8 To 9 – Personality Develops

He/she will start to show their personality from about months eight to nine. Here you will also be able to say no and your baby will stop what they are doing. Words like ‘mama’ and ‘dada’ might be heard for the first time as well. Remember to listen and respond when he/she ‘talks’. You are teaching them what they say is important.

Months 9 To 10 – Reactions And Picking Things Up

From nine to ten months your baby will react and respond to your fear or caution. Crawling starts now which builds muscles and he/she will pick things up with their thumb and pointer finger, exercising their fine motor skills. Reading books together helps grow that imagination.

Months 10 To 12 – Singing, Talking, Walking

At ten to eleven months your baby will join you when you sing, start bouncing at the sound and you’ll hear their first real words. He/she might feel a bit more comfortable around strangers. Let your baby feed him/herself at age eleven to twelve months. This is great for their confidence as well as their small motor skills. And get the camera ready to record their first steps.

All In Their Own Time

You’ll see that each one of your children develops differently and that’s okay because they are created as precious individuals. Don’t compare and don’t fret. Listen to that small voice inside of you and be guided by your maternal instinct. Know that you are capable of so much and your baby will flourish as you love him/her and pour your attention on them. Let your baby develop in their own time. And remember to enjoy every single precious second as it really does go past so quickly.

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  1. Nishaat Rawoot

    Yes it’s very important for mums to understand that there is nothing to be worried about if their baby does certain later or earlier than others,especially new moms. Sure your friend says her baby has started to crawlat 8 months and your hasn’t yet at 9 months, don’t let that cause you to dash to you paediatrician with worry. Baby will get there in his own time at his own pace. Each child is different. Your one child’s development differs, from his sibling. If your 11th month old is not teething yet enjoy the calm before the storm.

  2. I have 3 kids and reading this article brings back so many memories. They are all so different and started doing things at different my first born started walking at 9 months whereas my second born started walking at 1.2 years.. Thanks for this amazing read

  3. Thank you for this Lynne, it’s really helpful. One thing I have learnt is that we mustn’t compare our kids at all, otherwise we will put pressure on those slow in reaching their milestones

  4. priceless memories, I love my kids milestones with my newborn after 6years he is now almostv2months and it’s so beautiful to see all this development through one soul it’s just amazing thank you so much

  5. If there’s anything motherhood has taught me is never to hurry the process and appreciate every milestone. So as a result that has helped me to get rid of the pressure of wanting my child to be doing something by a certain age.

  6. Love this. We did not reach some milestones on time but we eventually got there and I could not have been more proud. Everyone kept saying and sometimes even now they will say but he should be doing it by now. I absolutely hate it sure he probably should have but he is not the same as any other child, every child gets there on his or her own time and whether my son gets a milestone on time, before time or way past it, is ok with me

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