Your little cruiser is gaining confidence with each developmental milestone achieved. At this stage, some babies might already be standing, walking assisted or unassisted. Fret not if your bub has yet to start walking as most babies do so around 15 months or so. By then, the adults will be treated to mini marathons as they wonder around, exploring their immediate environment.
Most babies crawl on all fours but if yours is doing the bum shuffle, it is perfectly alright too. He is getting ready to propel vertically into a stand and is figuring it out.
Fun activities: Your little explorer is working his leg muscles and bodily coordination in a bid to push himself up. Encourage play on a slightly higher platform such as a low table or chair by placing toys on it and getting him to reach for them. Instinctively, he will try to work his balancing skills to prop himself upwards. When he does stand up, flash a big smile and cheer him on, as babies do enjoy the positive affirmation for something done right – that’s communication skills there – although he can’t say “thank you” but he’s sure to look you in the eyes with a goofy smile!
This keen observer is continuing to learn about his surroundings. Everyday items such as the remote control or telephone pique his interest, and that’s just the start of junior learning from you!
Fun activities: Think he was not watching when you switched the TV channel? He knows that thing with buttons in your hands and he is out to get his hands on them too! Let baby explore that, and it is bound to keep him happy. Everyday items continue to be fun for your baby. How about a surprise box for him? Simply grab a clean box and put in different items found within your home (e.g. keys, pens, paper, calculator, stuffed toy) – your little explorer will enjoy taking things out of the box and touching each of them, sharpening his sensory skills and discovery abilities with varying textures, buttons, materials, sounds etc.
Music and bodily movements are part of a baby’s learning journey. Although he may not be able to make sense of the lyrics (yet!), the varying tunes and octanes keep things fun.
Fun activities: Put on any CD or just turn on the radio and sing along! Follow the lyrics and make exaggerated actions or sway your body – this will encourage your child to move too, heightening his gross motor skills. While exposing your child to music has been linked to being beneficial to a child’s brain development. If he has started standing or walking, get him to shake his booty along with the music, he’s bound to have an awesome time!
They say imitating is the best form of flattery – this can only be applicable if your bub imitates what you deem as “right”. Unfortunately, they are unable to tell right from wrong so adults, time to watch how you converse and interact with others.
Fun activities: Embark on a game of Copycat and have your baby follows the actions that you make. Start with easy ones like flashing a big smile, touching your head; followed by rolling a ball, clapping your hands. All those happy giggles and laughter not only strengthens his self-discovery journey but also helps tighten the bonds with your baby as both of you enjoy precious fun moments like these together!
Now that your baby has hit his big one, there’s no stopping him in his physical growth and multiple aspects of his development. Their innocence and purity in them is like no other, so do enjoy this time together while they waddle into the next stage of their lives. As parents, our wish for them is to be healthy and happy, and they will always be children in our eyes.
By Cindy Gan | Edited by Crystal Tan