Child development is so mysterious and complex that some scientists devote a lifetime to studying it. In the laboratory of your own nursery, you'll be blown away by how quickly your kids change. Here are 3 of the top surprises of this magical part of parenthood.
Babies get around in different ways than we give them credit for
Eventually, your cute little snuggly lap-baby will venture into the world of mobility. But as for what this will look like, no one can predict. He may go for the more typical sequence: rolling over, followed by sitting, crawling, pulling up, cruising, walking, and running. On the other hand, he might march to his own developmental drum.
Some babies never get the crawling memo. "My son turned 10 months yesterday and just took his first steps. He completely skipped crawling," one Trinkets & More mom says in surprise. She's not alone. Estimates are that about 10 percent of the babies in her practice bypass crawling.
Is this something to be concerned about? Definitely not.
Other babies take things in the opposite direction, showing no interest in going vertical for quite a while. Instead, they're perfectly content to roll from one side of the room to another, even as their counterparts crawl alongside them. "One of my 8-month-old twins is now getting into the crawling position, while the other wants nothing to do with anything but rolling around," one Trinkets & More mom says.
As long as your baby is developing within age-appropriate guidelines, there's no need to worry. Give him plenty of space to do his thing, and eventually, he'll graduate to other ways of getting around. Pull-along toys are a great way to help in developing gross and fine motor skills.
If your child isn't walking by 18 months, however, talk to his doctor. It could be a sign of a motor delay.
Your newborn can do tricks!
Eat, sleep, poop, cry… Isn't that all newborns do? Nope. A recent survey revealed that many new moms are shocked to discover that their baby can do quite a bit more than that.
Think newborns just lie around and sleep? Your baby may actually be able to lift his head from your chest by 2 or 3 weeks of age – and sometimes well before that, says a paediatrician.
"No one believes me, but my little guy lifted his head for three seconds right after he was born," Sheetal, a Trinkets & More mom says.
Your newborn also arrives equipped with all kinds of fascinating reflexes: Stroke his cheek, and he'll turn his head toward you (rooting reflex). Put your finger in his mouth, and he'll suck it with the strength of a vacuum cleaner (sucking reflex). Hold him with his feet touching the floor, and he'll do a little step dance (stepping reflex). These reflexes help him develop and survive – plus they're great entertainment for you.
Another fun thing to try: Stick your tongue out at your newborn.If he's not too tired, hungry, or distracted – and if he's in the right mood – he may stick out his own tiny tongue right back at you! (This is a great activity for older siblings. They'll be delighted that they "taught" their baby sibling to stick out his or her tongue!)
You have the power to boost brain development
Browse any toy store and you'll see all kinds of products designed to boost your baby's brain power. And you may find a variety of gym and music classes for babies in your area. Toys are fun, and classes are a great way to meet other parents – but will your baby fall behind the other babies if you don't do all this stuff?
No, definitely not. Nothing can replace plain old exploration and interaction to help your baby thrive intellectually. "Babies don't learn from flashcards," says Gopnik. "They learn by exploring the world and by having people pay attention to them."
Talk to your child from day one. Research shows that children whose parents spoke to them extensively as babies have significantly higher IQs and richer vocabularies than kids who didn't receive much verbal stimulation.
Don't be afraid to give your baby some independent time, too. "I leave my 5-month-old to play on her mat by herself for a short time in the morning," one Trinkets & More mom says, especially when you have organic, child safe - wooden educational toys. "I sit by and enjoy a coffee while observing all the neat things she can do with her toys to amuse herself."
In fact, babies learn a lot even by hearing you talk to someone else. So stop feeling guilty about chatting on the phone while your little one plays on the floor! She's developing the entire time.
Trinkets & More - Your Kids Wow Store brings you carefully selected and curated organic wooden toys from around the world to your doorstep right here in India. We are committed to our mission - "No compromise on the quality for price when it comes to our little ones!"