1st Year Baby Development: What to Look For, Measure & Boost For A Brighter Future!

1st Year Baby Development

Adequately developing your baby's skills, starts the very first day. The guidelines given in this article provide the rough, but highly effective, milestones to track development progress.

What's 1st year baby development all about?"… you probably ask.

Let me try to explain by telling you a very short, but relevant, story.

Ever since I started working I've only worked with children with learning problems. Many of them have serious problems. And some of them are not so serious. But all of these kids somehow struggle to do well at school.

The interesting thing is, most of them are clever and have above-average intelligence. Yet they still struggle at school. Often parents are most concerned about their child's report cards - that's when they start contacting me. These cards often read something like this:  "… he struggles to read and cannot do math."

Now when I closely look at the card, talk to the teacher and do a few tests, I very often find that the problem is rather "mixing up" of letters and numbers. Kids often read the word "but" incorrectly as "tub" - they mix up the positions of the b and t letters. Or they correctly read 43 on the board, but then repeatedly write 34 in their book.

What you find is that some children do not "automatically" master all the essential skills to reach full potential. 

Children sometimes do NOT automatically get all the learning experiences when they're young. Some kids have not figured out where "left" is and where "right" is. And that's something they start learning even in their very first year - as a newborn! And there are many more such examples. In the same way, your child must get many different experiences to develop his or her full potential.

But the real question is… why does it happen? And more important… what can you and I do to prevent it from happening to your child?

What's this 1st year baby development page all about?

It's a brief overview of some of things I've seen that your baby should be doing and learning in the first year. But my most important reason for writing this page is because I'm really of the opinion that most of the learning problems kids experience could be prevented- if only parents knew what their children needed. Obviously what I've written here can never be complete. So, I've given a bit more detail in each of the age category sections.

I've also covered a bit more in my FREE short report; 6 Secrets for Giving Your Child A Better, Brighter Future.

You can download this free report by filling in your name and email address in spaces below, then click Submit.

You'll immediately be taken to the download page.

I'll regularly update and add to this page - almost like a constant "work in progress". So, please do come back often to check for updates, or simply subscribe to the blog. It's an easy, free way of being notified of any changes or upgrades. And you can stop it any time you wish. But I hope you don't

Before we start… a very special note

1st Year baby development and milestones are accurate and scientifically proven facts. But please keep in mind that it's almost impossible to tell you EXACTLY what your child should be doing every week of the first year. WOW! That's asking a bit too much

You can get a more information by reading The 3 most important first year baby development areas.

But you can get a very good indication since all kids follow the same development sequence - but it can never be 100% mathematically & statistically the same for everyone. Also, this is just an overview. For practical things you can do to help, click on the relevant age links and also read this practical approach.

Ok, enough said. Let's start.

What's the difference between the 1st year calendar, a month by month baby calendar, and... baby milestones?

In essence, the 1st year baby calendar is merely chopped up in 12 pieces - monthly intervals - to give you the month by month baby development calendar. Many parents want to know what their child should be doing at a particular age. What they should be playing with? And how can we encourage their development?

A month by month baby development calendar is a tool to answers all those questions. It allows you to regularly study different stages of baby development in the first year and beyond.

Baby milestones are specific, well-known "noticeable feats" or "development achievements" every baby should master. Most parents only talk about sitting, crawling, standing and walking as the major baby milestones. But they're missing 2 more, namely head control and rolling. in short, baby milestones are only part of the information covered in a baby development calendar.

Let's begin with the details of what to expect...

1st Year Baby Development - Month 1

  • It is a period of adjustment for your tiny tot!
  • Her arms and limbs are very fragile, and with no control over the movements,
  • Her neck is too weak, and it can't be controlled,
  • Your baby will have many spontaneous movements, that are purely automatic in nature,
  • She needs your warmth and security,
  • She needs to be protected and fed at all times,
  • Her eyes are still weak and she can't see far,
  • She can look at your face and smile occasionally,
  • Her eye sight is tuned more towards everything that is black and white

Rough guidelines at around 1 month… 1st year baby development

  • To sleep almost the whole day
  • You to hold and hug her a lot
  • To listen to all kinds of sounds, especially voices

1st Year Baby Development - Month 2

  • In this month, your baby will be stronger and moves more,
  • Her limbs become a bit loose and flexible,
  • She also has a pleasing smile and an attractive disposition,
  • Her vision will improve, while she can respond to your hand movements,
  • Her eyes will be open to look at the outside world,
  • She will create fists with her hands, but...
  • She will not be too strong to hold anything.

Rough guidelines at around 2 month… 1st year baby development

  • Sleep a bit less and is more active and alert when awake
  • Listen more carefully to voices and other sounds
  • Looks and stares at face close to her, and…
  • Starts to follow moving things closer to her

1st Year Baby Development - Month 3

  • Her eyes will be more alert and active,
  • And she will be more responsive to movements,
  • A hint of hand activity will be visible now,
  • She can grasp at objects and toys,
  • But, she will have weak legs and backbones, and...
  • Her head is still uncontrolled

Rough guidelines at around 3 month… 1st year baby development

  • Starts listening more closely to her own voice
  • Puts almost everything in her mouth to "explore" and find out more about them
  • Starts responding to nearby voices and sounds by using her own voice

1st Year Baby Development - Month 4

  • Your baby's social life will start picking up now!
  • Her motor skills will also improve slightly,
  • Her vision will also improve,
  • She tracks your movements

Rough guidelines at around 4 month… 1st year baby development

  • Babbles and makes a lot of noises
  • Looks closer at her hands and things she's holding in her hands
  • Holds and kicks her feet when lying on her back
  • Uses her arms to push and raise her upper body up when lying on her tummy

1st Year Baby Development -Month 5

  • She can slowly hold on to any objects with a single hand,
  • She will have developed a habit of putting everything in her mouth,
  • She'll manage to sit leaning forward unsupported for sometime,
  • She can also roll over her back and start beating the floor,

Rough guidelines at around 5 month… 1st year baby development

  • She can sit with support
  • Toys and things are banged together using both hands and arms
  • Can on average comfortably lift her head, shoulders and chest off the floor when lying on her tummy

1st Year Baby Development - Month 6

  • She can move on her front with assured movements.
  • She may start sitting on the floor with out any support,
  • The first signs of crawling will also be seen,
  • She starts making many vocal sounds, that are as sweet as pleasing music notes!
  • She becomes playful with you and your spouse.

Rough guidelines at around 6 month… 1st year baby development

  • Toys and things are more actively banged together or thrown around
  • She can raise her head when lying on her back,
  • Can stretch her arms out deliberately to be lifted
  • She sits alone for short periods, and..
  • Can roll over to her back when lying on her tummy 

Rough guidelines at around 7 month… 1st year baby development

  • She can reach for her toys when lying on the floor
  • Pulls herself to a sitting or standing position in her cot
  • She sits without support
  • Deliberately babbles and "talks" to attract attention
  • She picks up a small object using her thumb and index finger

1st Year Baby Development - Months 8-12

  • Your baby will master the art of crawling, and...
  • She will also learn to play with many things,
  • Some will also master the art of pulling up, and standing by holding a furniture or a support structure,
  • Some babies may also stand without any support!
  • She will also start her antics and games, all the while seeking your constant attention,

Rough guidelines at around 8 month… 1st year baby development

  • She handles toys and things in both hands and can transfer them from one hand to the other,
  • Toys are dropped, but she intentionally looks for them and can pick them up
  • She starts creeping and pulling herself along on the floor, almost a "commando style" crawling

Click here for more information about baby development at 8 month 

Rough guidelines at around 9 month… 1st year baby development

  • She sits without support for up to 15 minutes,
  • Crawls around on the floor on hands and knees… although not yet very coordinated,
  • Uses her cot or other stable structure to pull herself upright,
  • Clearly chooses and goes to parents and other familiar persons rather than to strangers, and…
  • Loves to climb and fall over obstacles on the floor 

Rough guidelines at around 10 month… 1st year baby development

  • Her crawling is much more coordinated. And much faster,
  • She doesn't like lying on her back and can quite easily roll over and get into a sitting position on her own,
  • Index finger and thumb coordination is much more controlled and she uses this skill to pick up many small things,
  • She discovers the world by sticking her index finger into every hole she finds - one of the first ways to learn the concept of "inside", and…
  • Although she cannot speak yet, she understands simple orders like "yes" and "no"

Rough guidelines at around 11 month… 1st year baby development

  • She skillfully handles toys in either hand, and can move it from one hand to the other,
  • Helps when dressed by putting an arm into a sleeve or holding a foot when putting on shoes,
  • Stands balanced on her own for periods,
  • Identifies and pick out familiar toys and objects even when they're surrounded by other things

Rough guidelines at around 12 month… 1st year baby development

  • She correctly uses about 3 "words" - although not necessarily proper dictionary words. But everything tells you that she understands them and they have meaning to her... words like mama, papa,
  • She gets into lots of trouble by opening almost every container, except maybe screw caps,
  • Is constantly busy to put things "in" and take it "out" again from all types of containers, and...
  • Easily and accurately picks up very small objects between index finger and thumb

I've tried to cover a few of the most important "pointers" for every month. I like to call them "rules of thumb". Of course, this list is by no means comprehensive. I will regularly be expanding and adding more information for each of these periods.

Get lots of free regular advice about your baby's 1st year development  by clicking here

I also regularly add and send out some info, tips and practical things you can do about the 1st baby development year. This comes to you through the Baby Development News messages. It's absolutely free. Simply fill in your details below, and click the Submit button. That's all.

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1st Year Baby Development  --> Baby development articles

What else is best for your Baby?

Need any first year baby development answers?

Have something that bothers you about your baby's development during the first 12 months? Let's hear it!

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