Your baby at 6-12 months

As your baby continues to grow and develop they‘ll be taking an interest in, and exploring, the world around them. He/she will learn from playing and interacting with people. 

Play should be fun and is one of the main ways in which your baby will learn, helping them to understand the world around them and develop physically, socially and emotionally. 

It’s important to remember that every baby is different and your baby may develop at a different rate to another. This doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with your baby. If your baby was born early it may take them a little longer to reach their developmental milestones and this is normal. 

  • Sitting unsupported
  • Get from a lying into a sitting position
  • Get into a crawling position (if they do crawl)
  • Move around in some form.  This could be crawling, a commando style crawl or a bottom shuffle, all are completely normal. 
  • Pull to standing position 
  • Stand up holding a hand or furniture for support
  • Walk alongside furniture or use a push along toy to walk with. Your baby may be standing unsupported or may even be walking independently
  • Reach forward to grab toys whilst in a sitting position
  • Wave and clap
  • Feed themselves with their fingers
  • Drink from a free flow beaker with a lid on, some babies may be able to drink from an open cup
  • Take toys and transfer them hand to hand
  • Use their index finger to poke at things
  • Use pincer grip to pick up small items
  • Put things into containers and take them out
  • Shake, bang, throw and drop toys and items
  • Visually follow a fallen toy and look where it has landed

There are many different ways you can interact and help your baby’s development without having to buy expensive toys. You can help to promote your baby’s development in the following ways:

  • Continue to allow your baby to have lots of floor time as this will enable them to develop their skills and explore their environment. Give them plenty of opportunity to move about ensuring the environment is safe. Baby walkers are not recommended and can impact upon your baby’s development and increase their risk of having an accident. 
  • Place your baby’s toys on either side of them to encourage them to grasp them; this will improve your baby’s sense of coordination and balance. 
  • Place your baby in a standing position making sure they’re supported. Place toys in front of them to keep them interested.
  • When offering toys make sure they’re appropriate for their age and don’t contain any small parts which could pose a risk for your baby. 
  • Offer cause and effect toys such as baby building blocks and cups and encourage them to stack them and then knock them down and start again. 
  • Give your baby toys that mimic everyday items such as toy plastic keys and phones or household items such as wooden spoons, pans and plastic bottles with rice or pasta in. 
  • Take your baby outside and let them explore their natural environment by touching grass, leaves, sand and water to develop their sensory skills. If allowing your baby to play with water always ensure they’re supervised and never left alone.
  • Make a treasure basket with natural household items such as spoons, short pieces of material and sponge to develop their sensory skills. 
  • Play music and let them see you dancing.
  • Sing songs and nursery rhymes and action songs such as pat-a-cake, wind the bobbin up and row, row, row your boat. 
  • Share books and read to your baby. 
  • Continue talking and interacting using words to describe your actions.
  • If you're worried about any aspect of your baby’s development please don’t hesitate to speak to your health visitor.