What Most Babies Do by This Age
- Is shy or nervous with strangers
- Cries when parents leave
- Has favorite things and people
- Shows fear in some situations
- Repeats sounds or actions to get attention
- Puts out arm or leg to help with dressing
- Plays games such as “peek-a-boo”
- Explores things in different ways, like shaking, banging, throwing
- Finds hidden things easily
- Looks at the right picture or thing when it’s named
- Starts to use things correctly; for example, drinks from a cup, brushes hair
- Bangs two things together
- Puts things in a container, takes things out of a container
- Pokes with index (pointer) finger
- Follows simple directions like “pick up the toy”
Language and Communication
- Responds to simple spoken requests
- Uses simple gestures, like shaking head “no” or waving “bye-bye”
- Makes sounds with changes in tone (sounds more like speech)
- Says “mama” and “dada” and exclamations like “uh-oh!”
- Tries to say words you say
- Gets to a sitting position without help
- Pulls up to stand, walks holding on to furniture (“cruising”)
- May take a few steps without holding on
- May stand alone
What Families Can Do
- Develop and maintain consistent routines.
- Help your baby learn limits by saying “no” in a firm quiet voice.
- Provide your baby with choices, such as, “Do you want to wear your red shirt or your blue shirt?”
- Give your baby lots of hugs and kisses.
- Say what you think your baby is feeling, such as happy, mad or sad.
- Play, sing and read to your baby.
- Talk to your baby about what you are doing such as, “I am changing your diaper.”
- Let your baby turn the pages when looking at a book together and take turns naming items in the pictures.
- Use words to tell your baby what comes next, such as “Mommy is putting on your socks and then we will put on your shoes.”
- Build on what your baby says or tries to say, or points to – if your baby points to a dog and says “da,” respond, “Yes, that’s a little, black dog.
- Play with blocks, shape sorters and other toys that encourage your baby to use his/her hands.
- Give your baby crayons and paper and let him/her draw freely.
- Hide small toys and have your baby find them.
- Name body parts out loud.
- Sing songs with actions like “The Itsy-Bitsy Spider” and “Wheels on the Bus”; teach your baby the actions.
- Child-proof your home: lock up household cleaning, laundry, lawn care and car care products; use safety gates; and lock doors to outside and basement.
- Provide push toys such as a car or wagon.