Working With the Milestones

Photo by quinn.anya

Every baby is different. That means that each baby will learn new things like how to walk and how to talk at different times. They will also go through the stages of crawling and speaking full sentences at different times; however, following is a summary of the average ages that most babies will do each of these things. Don’t worry if your baby is behind or ahead of the average. Again, these ARE average ages. That means that some babies are earlier on and some are later. There is nothing wrong with your baby being even a few months behind the average. If you are worried, however, speak with your baby’s doctor, who should be able to tell you if there is anything wrong.

Another important thing to focus on is that these are the averages for children that are born completely normal. Some children tare born with an abnormality, whether it is a disease or simply a different brain chemistry. All of these things will play a part in when your child starts picking up on all of new traits and tendencies. For example, Albert Einstein was believed to be dumb because he did not speak for years, and yet he went on to become one of the smartest people in our world.

Your baby will go through these milestones at his or her own pace; however, there are some simple ways that you can help your baby along on this path. Babies will be able to learn even faster if parents support them and try to help their bodies along. Before they can get through any of these milestones, they need to be physically strong enough to do them. You can help with that by helping your baby to stand or sit upright as well and showing them how to walk across the floor even before they are ready to do these things on their own.

The first milestone that your baby will reach is going to be rolling over. This typically happens around the four-to-six-month mark. This means that your baby will be able to move from the stomach to the back and then from the back to the stomach. Most babies begin by rolling from their stomachs and may not be able to roll the other way for a longer period of time.

After learning how to roll, your baby will start learning how to crawl. This is often the stage when some babies start getting into trouble because they will be able to move themselves around and can get into anything they can reach from all fours. Most babies start crawling right around seven to nine months; however, a baby will not always start out crawling on hands and knees as you might expect. Many babies actually start on their elbows and drag their bodies across the floor before they figure out the best method of crawling.

Once your baby starts crawling, you’ll need to be careful because your baby will be able to move around much more quickly once it can crawl. This means keeping an eye on the baby even more closely than you would have before.  Just a few minutes’ time can allow your baby to get from one room to another and get into something he or she shouldn’t be into. Make sure that once your baby is crawling, you are following the child wherever he or she goes.  Another thing that comes along with crawling is the fact that everything starts moving faster. Your baby will be walking in no time.

Around the same time that babies learn how to crawl, they also learn how to sit up. This is typically done by leaning against something first; however, your baby will soon be able to support its own weight. This means the baby will be able to sit upright without holding on to anything for longer periods of time. If you wish to help your baby with sitting up, you can try sitting them between your legs so that they lean against you or leaning them against something else. This will help them to become strong enough to do this on their own.

The last thing that will happen around this time is that babies will begin to stand. This generally does not mean they will stand on their own, but that they will pull themselves up. Your baby may figure out how to use tables, chairs and anything else around to get into a standing position. The baby may even try to take steps; however, generally he or she will need another few months to manage this. The baby may be content simply to stand and not try to move for a while before sitting back down or crawling somewhere else.

Teething comes within a few months of this at about 10 to 12 months. This is when most babies will start fussing and crying more often because they feel pain as their teeth come in. It is very important that you take care of your baby’s teeth as they come in and that you are helping your baby with the teething process. This is typically painful. and that means your baby needs you for comfort and to provide soothing toys or creams when the pain gets too bad.

At the same time as babies typically start teething, they will also start walking. This is one of the most exciting milestones that babies will go through because they will then be much closer to doing things for themselves. Walking is a difficult step for any baby, and it could take many tries before the child is able to take even one or two steps; however, you want to be sure that you are supporting your baby’s efforts to walk. Make sure you pull your baby into a standing position often to help get his or her legs used to supporting the weight. This can actually help to speed up the time it takes to learn walking.

Finally, there is one milestone that every parent wants to hear–that is, when the baby is able to start talking. Babies will generally start speaking their first words at around 13-18 months, right around one year to a year and a half. This first word is typically something they hear a lot and is most commonly either “mama”, “dada,” or “no.” If you want your baby to say something, the important thing is to repeat it frequently.

As your baby grows more and more, he or she will be able to speak even more words. For the next few months, however, any ‘sentence’ will consist of only one word or possibly a couple of words strung together. Your baby will likely not be able to speak in full sentences until about 25 to 36 months of age, around 2-3 years. Of course, if you work with your child, it is possible that you could speed up this process.

One important step in teaching children how to speak is to talk to them properly. Many couples like to use baby talk when they speak with their children because they believe these ways of talking can actually help children understand better; however, “baby talk” can actually hamper the way that your baby learns. You want to be sure that your baby is learning how to speak properly, but babies will mimic the way that their parents talk, so if you talk in a voice that isn’t proper or say words in silly ways, then that is how your child will learn to speak. Once babies learn to speak that way, it is difficult to get them to switch to anything else.