Welcoming your baby into this world is pure bliss. Witnessing the improvement in your baby’s growth is more than that. From the day your baby is born, you can observe little changes every month in the baby’s physical and cognitive functions. Such developmental milestones are the stages of recognizing patterns that are expected in a child’s development. The first year of a baby’s life can be understood as infantile age.

At 3 months of age

When the baby is around three months of age, there are certain interesting aspects that a parent can find. Let us have a look at the expected skill developments, such as gross motor and fine motor skills, vocal skills, and the social language skills of the child.

Gross Motor Skills

  • Lifts head and chest when on stomach
  • Keeps head steady when held in a sitting position
  • Supports self on elbows and wrists
  • Rolls over from stomach to back
  • Follows your movements by turning the head side to side
  • Watches the face of parents and caregivers
  • Follows a dangling toy from side to side

Fine Motor Skills

  • Opens and shuts hands
  • Brings hands together

Verbal Language Skills

  • Coos and babbles at known people
  • Verbalizes a few sounds when engaged
  • Blows bubbles and plays with tongue
  • Laughs belly-deep
  • Makes vowel noises

Social Language and Self-help Skills

  • Smiles in response to your smile or talk
  • Startles or cries at sudden noises
  • Loves looking at new faces
  • Squeals with delight appropriately
  • Discriminates smile and smiles often
  • The baby reaches out for objects

Encouraging your little one in their efforts and interacting by smiling, cheering up, cuddling, and spending time with them can help them develop such skills.

At 6months of age

By this time, your baby would show some significant improvements in motor skills and speech skills. Social interaction would also improve. The activeness of the child can be clearly felt.

Gross Motor Skills

  • Holds head steady without any support
  • Sits briefly without support

Fine Motor Skills

  • Passes a toy from one hand to another
  • Rakes small objects with 4 fingers
  • Bangs small objects on the surface

Verbal Language Skills

  • The child can laugh out loud
  • Makes a lot of different sounds
  • Makes double syllable sounds (ma-ma, ta-ta, da-da)
  • Babbles and enjoys vocal play

Social Language and Self-help Skills

  • Pats or smiles at own reflection
  • Looks when the name is called

Introducing certain timetables in their playtime, sleep time, and mealtime would help you engage the child evenly throughout the day. This also helps in their all-round development.

At 9 months of age

The activity levels of your baby are clearly notable during this age. While the child starts crawling all over the house making strange sounds, they throw objects with those little hands and try to pick things using the pincer grip of their fingers.

Gross Motor Skills

  • Sits well without support
  • Pulls self to stand
  • Crawls on hands and knees
  • Transitions well between sitting and lying

Fine Motor Skills

  • Picks up small objects with 3fingers and thumb
  • Lets the objects go off intentionally
  • Picks up food to eat
  • Bangs objects together

Verbal Language Skills

  • Says “Dada” or “Mama” nonspecifically
  • Looks around when hears questions “Where’s your bottle?” or “Where your blanket?”
  • Copies sound that parents make

Social Language and Self-help Skills

  • Uses basic gestures
  • Holds arms out to be picked up
  • Imitates waving a bye-bye
  • Drops or throws toys and looks where they go
  • Turns consistently when name is called
  • Plays games like peek-a-boo and pat-a-cake

Entering into 10th month, they try to stand and walk by holding furniture. Kids at this age, try different things on their own while they end up bumping into something.

12 months

Nearing their first birthday, your kid would show some interesting developments. They would often surprise us by commanding more attention with their newly acquired cute skills.

Gross Motor Skills

  • Takes first independent steps
  • Stands without support

Fine Motor Skills

  • Drops an object in a bowl or cup
  • Picks small objects with a 2-finger pincer grip
  • Picks up food to eat

Verbal Language Skills

  • Uses words like mama or dada specifically
  • Uses one word other than mama, dada, or personal names
  • Follows directions and gestures such as motioning (Give me that pen)

Social Language and Self-help Skills

  • Looks for hidden objects
  • Imitates new gestures

When to Be Concerned?

All children develop at slightly different rates. But, there are some things that could signal potential developmental issues. 

We recommend you consult an expert if the child:

  • Doesn’t crawl
  • Can’t stand when supported
  • Doesn’t speak few basic two-letter words
  • Doesn’t smile, wave or shake head
  • Doesn’t point to show things
  • Loses skills the child previously had
  • Doesn’t imitate the sounds they hear
  • Doesn’t mind when a parent or caregiver leaves or returns

In case you observe any such issues, it is recommended to consult your pediatrician and get a developmental screening done. If you think you need any kind of support such as speech consultation or assessment, or any kind of therapies for helping children with developmental delays, our expert psychologists, speech-language pathologists, occupational therapists, behavioral therapists, and special educators at Wellness hub are happy to help you. Happy Parenting!