Parents can look forward to an exciting time watching their new born develop and grow to reach his or her first year. It is a time for many firsts – the first time baby starts to crawl, take the first step and maybe even utter his or her first word(s). This article aims to give new parents a general overview of what parents can expect to see as the little one reaches one year old.
0 – 3 months
In the first 3 months, baby will be able to focus and track objects easily as you wave his or her toys in front of them. He or she will also start to recognise the faces of those who are constantly around them and distinguish between certain sounds. In addition, baby will start to babble and practice grasping at objects and toys.’
At this stage, baby loves to be picked up and held close, and be able to communicate hunger, tiredness, fear and even discomfort through his or her cries.
4 – 7 months
This period is where you can look forward to getting a bit more sleep as baby will now be able to sleep for about 6 hours before waking during the night. He or she will also be able to sit up easily without support, roll over and start to explore the surroundings using his or her hands and mouth. You will also most likely to be able to capture his or her first smile, first teeth and delight in baby’s ability to recognise his or her own name when called.
At this stage, baby spends a lot of time observing and watching people and events taking place around them. He or she will also enjoy dropping objects often to see what happens and watch you pick them up again and again.
8 – 12 months
Here is when you need to become more watchful as baby will now be able to crawl around the house and easily finds hidden objects. Baby is also learning to stand up by him or herself and will grasp anything around for support. Continue to speak to baby, repeating your words over and over as this is when baby will utter his or her first word.
Baby’s cognitive ability is also more advanced at this stage and will be able to display anxiety when around strangers. He or she will also be able to communicate his preferences towards certain foods and/or toys.
Relish this first year
In general, baby will have tripled in his or her birth weight and doubled in length by his or first birthday. Nonetheless, do not be worried if baby seems to fall behind as each baby’s growth stage is different to another.
The most important thing is to spend as much time as you can to cuddle, play and get to know each other. Enjoy this growth period of many firsts, as it will pass by in an instant!