These skills tend to be quite variable. But at this age the typical child:
- Sits well.
- Crawls, creeps on their hands.
- Pulls to a stand; cruises around the furniture.
- Uses a pincer grasp; pokes with the index finger.
- Finger feeds partially.
- Imitates vocalizations; uses one and two syllable babbling.
- Responds to their name, and to questions such as "Where is mama?".
- Understands a few words: "no-no" or "bye-bye."
- Enjoys social games such as peek-a-boo and pat-a-cake.
- Reacts to strangers with caution or fear.
- Retrieves a toy hidden by a cloth.
Injury prevention is proactive. Consider the following:
- Use gates on stairwells, and safety devices on windows and screens.
- As children begin to pull up, they may grab and pull down tablecloths on which heavy or hot containers have been placed.
- Keep sharp objects in a secure place.
- Prevent the child from playing with electrical sockets or cords.
- Do not give infants foods (peanuts, hot dogs, popcorn, frozen peas, corn, beans, raw carrots, apple, grapes or raisins) that they may easily choke on.
- Do not store toxic substances in empty pop bottles, glasses or jars.
- Upgrade to a new toddler seat when your baby weighs 20 pounds.
These activities provide good examples for modeling important skills and encourage your child to grow in a healthy and happy way:
- Encourage babbling and communication. Imitate the baby's sounds.
- Play social games to help develop interaction and imitation.
- Encourage exploration by the child.
- As your child becomes more independent and explores more, it is okay to set limits, give verbal "no's" and remove the infant from potential dangers.
Good nutrition is essential to a growing body. Tips include:
- Use table foods while the child is sitting at the table with the family.
- Feeding may be reduced to four times daily.
- Give toast or a teething biscuit for self-feeding.
- Encourage drinking from a cup.
- Be aware of how little and how whimsically the child may eat toward the end of the first year.
- Continue fluoride supplementation if needed.
Childhood behavior may go from one extreme to another. This age is no exception:
- Sleep problems may be alleviated if a regular bedtime routine is followed.
- Infants will often have night awakening; use a favorite toy or object to ease the transition back to sleep.
- Many children at this age cry when the parents leave their presence. This is a normal stage, and is not due to spoiling or a parents return to work.
Health maintenance is essential to a child's well-being:
- Brush teeth twice a day with water; avoid fluoridated toothpaste.
- Perform frequent hand washing.
- Children may still nap once or twice a day.
- Shoes are needed only to protect the feet from sharp objects and the cold.
- Shoes should be flexible, the sole of the shoe should be of a nonskid material and the upper should be of a breathable material.
- There is no scientific basis for shoes helping with out- and in-toeing.
The following items may be useful:
- Brazelton, T. Berry. Doctor and Child. Dell, 1978.
- Christopherson, Edward R. Little People: Guidelines for Common Sense Child Rearing
- Green, Martin I. A Sigh of Relief: The First Aid Handbook for Childhood Emergencies
- Larson, David E. Mayo Clinic Family Health Book. 2nd Ed. William Morrow & Co., Inc., NY, 1996.
- Philadelphia Child Guidance Center. Your Child's Emotional Health. Macmillan, NY, 1993.
- Schmidt, Barton, MD. Your Child's Health (Bantam Books)