Infants & Toddlers

NURTURING STAGE: Be sensitive and responsive

Reminder: With milestones – 50% of kids can do these things at this age

Newborn Milestones:

Reflex Milestones:

  • Startle: loud noises lead baby to move arms and legs
  • Grasp: baby can support their own weight if you hold them by their handsgrasping
  • Rooting: stroke baby’s cheek and they will turn towards the cheek stroked and begin to suck
  • Sucking: baby will automatically suck to eat
  • Walking: when you put baby on a flat surface they will make walking movementsImage result for walking reflex in babies

Smelling and Hearing and Seeing Milestones:

  • Birth: vision is blurry – can make out light, shape and movement
  • Three days of age: turn towards Motherese (cooing pattern of intonation)
  • Four days of age: breast-fed babies prefer the smell of their mother’s breast
  • One – two months: baby can focus both eyes and track

Gross and Fine Motor Milestones:

  • 3 months: baby can roll overImage result for baby rolling over
  • 4 months: baby can reach
  • 6 months: baby can sit up

Image result for baby sitting up

  • 6 months: baby can hold & grasp
  • 8 months: baby can crawl

Image result for baby crawling

  • 9 months: baby can use a pincer graspImage result for baby pincer grasp
  • 12 months: baby can walk

Image result for baby walking

  • 12 months: baby can hold silver wear (not perfect)

Cognitive & Emotional Milestones:

Baby will learn by doing, watching, and social interactions.

Types of cries:

  • Basic Cry: a rhythmic pattern of a cry – a brief silence – a short respiratory whistle that is higher pitched – a brief rest (hunger, uncomfortable)
  • Anger Cry: more intense/unpleasant than the basic cry – more excess air forced through the vocal cords
  • Pain Cry: a sudden very intense/unpleasant cry without preliminary moaning – a long initial cry followed by an extended period of breath holding (most parents can interpret this cry)
  • Attention Cry: develops later, insincere, manipulative, varies in intensity depending upon attention receiving

Language Milestones:

Read. Read. Read. 

Baby’s 1st word: 10-12 months


Concerns or Issues facing this time period:

  • To breastfeed or not to breastfeed?
    • Pros-
      • For baby: warmth, contact, easier to digest, doesn’t need to be prepared & is always available, it has nutrients, calories, fluids, & growth factors that ensure best development, and protects against obesity
      • For mama: releases oxytocin (which promotes mothering), returns uterus to size ti was before pregnancy faster, burns more calories – helps you lose weight, delays return of period (but is not birth control), reduces risk of ovarian & breast cancer, and keeps bones strong
    • Cons-
      • For baby: may have trouble latching, goes through system faster – leaving them hungry more, and potentially allergies
      • For mama: can be challenging & painful, and limits your mobility
  • Sleeping arrangements
    • Back-to-Sleep: infants should sleep on their back
    • Firm mattress with a tight sheet should be used in cribs
      • No bedding
    • Only swaddle up to 2 months
    • One piece clothing for sleeping
      • At a normal room temperature
    • Do not let them sleep in car seats or bouncy seats
    • No necklaces or bibs while sleeping
    • No crib sharing
    • No bed sharing with mom and dad
    • Pacifiers are a maybe
    • Sight & Sound AT ALL TIMES
  • Pacifier?
    • Wait a few days before introducing, so it doesn’t become confused with nipple
      • Pros: reduces chance of SIDS, helps meet need to suck, helps teach to self-sooth
      • Cons: higher risk of ear infection, after age TWO begins to impact teeth that won’t reverse – by age FOUR can have a lasting impact
    • Pacifier Controversy : interesting article about David Beckham’s daughters pacifier


L. Walker, Lecture 9: Birth to Two, SFL 240, Winter 2017


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