Your once little newborn now is a busy kiddo who can move about with ease. You may get a bit emotional as the scenery outside the window and the smell of the air reminds you of this time last year. How you were extremely anxious to meet your unborn baby and how uncertain you were whether you would be a good parent. One year has gone by fast, it was one of extreme exhaustion and uttermost joy.
As your baby approaches her very first birthday, she will keep honing all the new skills she learned in the past 11 months. The way she sits, crawls, and walks will become more mature and balanced. She will still be busy spending most of her day playing with her toys, discovering new things, and absorbing information from her interaction with you. After all, you are the greatest teacher and role model for her. This is also a great time to start introducing learning toys for your baby to develop their interest in science, technology, engineering, and maths.
Let’s take a look at what skills your little one will have mastered and what milestones will she reach at the end of this month.
- Pulls herself up to a sitting position or standing position.
- Cruises holding onto furniture, the wall, or a baby push walker
- Picks things up using thumb and index finger
- Takes objects out of a container and puts things into a container
- Stacks cups or blocks
- Rolls over both ways
- Drops objects intentionally
- Pokes using the index finger
- Drinks from a cup
- Able to feed herself finger food
- Sees colors and shades better
- Develops preference for tastes and textures
- Loves music
Social-Emotional and Cognitive Skills
- Gets anxious around strangers
- Has favorite people, things, food, and toys
- Imitates sounds and faces
- Responds to simple commands such as “stop”, “no”
- Says simple words such as “mama”, “dada”, “ball”
- Explores things by shaking, banging, and dropping
Activities with Your 12-Month-Old Baby
1. Make Music
Drums, percussions, trumpets, maracas…there are lots of musical instrument toys for your 12-month-old kiddo. While expressing their creativity, your baby works on her sense of rhythm. If there are siblings, it will be even more fun to form a band.
2. Pretend Play
At 12 months, you may have already shown your little one every corner of the house. Now that she is more independent and is almost her own little person, she will be thrilled to get her own house. There are many different styles and types of playhouses. It also provides a fun play for playmates to hang out together.
3. Crawl Through Tunnels
Crawl tunnels provide a fun place to encourage your little one to stay active. Some crawl tunnels also have ball pits and tents. Crawl tunnels invite your little one to stay active and helps to provide a fun way to strengthen and tone her muscle. However, remember to always keep an eye on your baby when she is playing in a crawl tunnel.
4. Experiment with Water
You may have already noticed how much your little one loves to play with water. Besides bathtime, there are many other ways to let her experiment with water. For example, you can place her on a baby-friendly pool inflatable so that she can practice swimming strokes. One caution from pediatricians is that parents should stay away from “around the neck” floats. These devices are not safe and are not recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics or the FDA.
Dr. Leah Alexander, MD, FAAP began practicing pediatrics at Elizabeth Pediatric Group of New Jersey in 2000. She has been an independently contracted pediatrician with Medical Doctors Associates at Pediatricare Associates of New Jersey since 2005.