Your baby’s development at around 12 months

June 24, 2008

As baby is becoming more mobile, her view of the world changes dramatically. You will be able to see how quickly your little one outgrows babyhood while developing into a more independent, righteous and active toddler. Be prepared for more to come as temper tantrums and the dawn of negativity approach.

Your baby’s physical development

By twelve months, your baby will be able to walk safely while holding on to furniture (so-called cruising). When lying down, she can rise confidently into a sitting position. Similarly, when sitting she can rise into a standing position when holding on to people or furniture. Baby may even be able to stand alone for moments until falling back onto her bottom. She has certainly found ways of moving about quickly, such as crawling on her hands and knees, bottom-shuffling or moving around on her hands and feet (walking like a bear). Some babies may also be able to walk a little with one hand held.

She will be able to play patty-cake (clap hands) or rolling back the ball and wave bye-bye. By this age, baby can safely crawl up the stairs and maybe even come downstairs backwards. Her ability to grasp tiny objects with her thumb and a finger (so-called pincer grasp) is becoming more defined because she has been practising a lot. Baby can point with her index finger at familiar persons and objects of interest. She can also handle toys in a more controlled way, i.e. drop or throw an item deliberately. Baby has a clear preference for one hand over the other but she will still use both hands equally. She can purposefully take an object from one hand into the other and release it into someone else’s hand. Baby starts to arrange toys and experiments with different shapes and sizes. Stacking toys will be a great addition to her toy box at this stage! Imitation is a very strong teacher so you may find more and more things that baby is eager to learn by imitating. By now, she can see nearly as well as an adult and her sight is still improving.

Your baby’s emotional development

Baby’s ability to recognize and to remember is already remarkable as she may find items that were mislaid. She can also recognize familiar objects by touch alone: months of analysing and testing have helped to memorize patterns, materials and other useful information about objects.

Her newly found independence causes her to discriminate between foods by taste, smell and look. Baby shows a clear preference for sweet, salty and fatty tastes. She also enjoys watching television and listening to music. By now, baby’s moods may change spontaneously; she is still dependent on the reassuring presence of a familiar adult, while she may be shy around strangers. Some babies at this age love their comfort blanket or teddy. Baby is very affectionate towards familiar adults and loves to socialize during mealtimes when joining in conversations. Her independence will lead her to learn how to feed herself and to help when getting washed and dressed.

There are a lot of games and activities that he will enjoy now. Take a look at our activity list for some inspiration here.

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