Boost Your Child’s Development


Your new baby is a marvel. Bent on exploring his world, he's pretty much unstoppable. And while it may not look like he needs any help mastering new skills, a little boost from his parents can’t hurt, right?

Baby milestone: Scooting around the house

At about 8 months, your baby is probably in constant motion. He may be rocking back and forth, and sitting up, and could also be close to crawling -- some pretty important motor development milestones. He will learn to focus on where he wants to go, and concentrate on scooting, sliding, or crawling to get there. This means coordinating his legs and arms, and digging his little hands into the floor to push or pull himself forward.

What you can do: Place a favorite toy in front of you or call his name over and over again to entice your little one to move toward you. This will encourage your tot to develop his coordination skills. Once your baby’s crawling, set up a small obstacle course with pillows or blocks. This will help teach him how to move from side to side, further enhancing his motor development.

Baby milestone: Getting curious

All that moving around will have your baby curious about the new things he is seeing and touching. This playing will eventually allow him to understand specific names and functions.

What you can do: Allow your child to explore his surroundings in a safe way. For example, boost your child’s development by gathering household objects that your baby will be intrigued by, such as a soft spatula or plastic containers that fit inside of each other. Remember, your little one will be putting almost everything in his mouth, so ensure any makeshift toys are not choking hazards.

Baby milestone: Becoming a bookworm

While your little one might not say his first words for a while, it’s never too early to introduce him to books. Reading to your baby helps build language comprehension and vocabulary and sets the stage for literacy. It also boosts listening and memory skills, so start when he is a newborn and don’t put those books down!

What you can do: Placing your baby in your lap and allowing him to interact with the book is a great start for children this age. Show him how to open the book, and let him bat and point at the pages. Don’t expect your baby to be able to sit still for long, but know that these simple interactions are helping to encourage a lifetime of reading.

Your child’s development is mesmerizing, to say the least. Consider keeping a journal to record all of his achievements. It will be fun to look back at the book together when he’s older!
by Katie Murray