Sunday, August 22, 2010

Baby development (8 to 12 months)

This stage is a new beginning for your child. She has gained leg strength and can walk by her own. Her vocal skills have improved and she is able to say "mama" or "papa". She communicates with her surroundings in her own language. She enjoys holding as well as throwing things away. She is aware of herself and has become possessive of her toys. She recognizes the mother and can now differentiate between family and strangers, and no longer smiles by chance. She has developed an emotional bond with her mother, and has separation anxiety. She has reached a stage where she has demands, but cannot express them, and hence this results into frustrations, and these frustrations ultimately manifest themselves into "tantrums".

How can you help?
  • Crawl besides her, imitate her movements and encourage her to do the same.
  • Encourage her to hold furniture as support to get around, and then place it slightly apart for her to bridge the gap. Always be around to help.
  • Remove all the unsafe and electric objects out of her reach.
  • Keep small objects away from her as she might have a tendency to put things in her mouth. She might swallow them or choke on them.
  • Introduce her to other children and encourage her to share.
  • Her fingers have become agile. She may be able to pick up small objects with her thumb and fingers without having to rest her wrist on a solid surface. Encourage her to put toys into and out of a basket.
  • She might enjoy music and rhymes, accompanied by actions. Play a lot of action and sound rhymes, like “Clap your hands”, “Old Mac Donald”, “Pat a cake, pat a cake", “Wheels on the bus” etc.
  • She may be able to follow simple directions and instructions, such as "Please bring me the ball”, "Pick up the spoon," “no” and “yes”. Help her learn by separating commands into easy-to-follow steps.

Next week, we shall talk about baby development between the age of 12 and 16 months.

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