We all talk about our baby’s first words, first teeth, the first time they crawled or walked or smiled up at us. In the shadow of all these, very prominent milestones are so much more than we don’t realise is being reached and passed. Milestones relating to emotions and colours can be so amazing and magical and yet be ignored and unaccounted for because we don’t know they’re happening. Here are some of the milestones that your baby is reaching which you should know about!
By the age of one month, babies tend to prefer objects that are black and white over objects which are coloured. By the age of six months, they can distinguish between shades of blue, red, and yellow.
By the end of one month, babies learn to recognize human faces, different objects, and differences between objects. They also tend to show a preference for human faces over other objects. By six months, babies can tell the difference between individual human faces as well as individual monkey faces, however, by nine months, the ability to distinguish between individual monkey faces is lost. By seven months old, babes can also identify partially hidden objects and show more interest in their own faces when looking in a mirror. They also show a preference for patterns, shapes, and objects that are more complex. By 12 months, the interest shifts on to objects while having moving parts and attain object permanence. They also begin to understand the correct use of objects.
By the end of the fourth month, your baby starts to recognize your voice. Your baby can distinguish between your voice and the voice of someone who is not you. To observe this, pay attention to the way your baby responds to your voice and how your baby responds to a voice that is not yours.
By 3 months old, babies learn to distinguish between a different face and will show a preference for your face or other people who your baby interacts with often. In other words, babies start showing preferences for familiar faces as well as objects. Your little one is more likely to smile at you, your partner, and friends and family who visit often as opposed to new people or people who are met only occasionally. By around 5-6 months, babes develop a close attachment to parents and exhibit discomfort if/when taken away from a parent. Separation anxiety typically develops by eleven months.
Generally, by the end of 7 months, babies are able to differentiate between emotions through tone of voice. You may notice your baby showing signs of discomfort if/when you talk to your little one in an angry or fearful tone. When spoken to in a happy tone, babies tend to show more signs of happiness and respond with smiles.
By the end of two months, babies start responding to smiles. Once your baby smiles for the first time, be observant about his/her smiling patterns and you’ll see that your little one’s smiles are often elicited as a response to you and your smiles. By three months, a baby will start smiling more in response to parents. By the end of seven months, smiles are more frequent in the presence of parents and rare when a parent is absent.
Though you may not realise it, babies learn a lot through imitation. This begins to be exhibited by around nine to ten months of age when babies can be seen responding to and imitating the action of hand waving. By twelve months old, they also begin to imitate exclamations and other speech sounds and understand simple commands.
While first words and first steps are easy to notice, these are a few of the other things going on with your baby that you might not know. Knowing how your baby is developing in all these aspects can help you be informed with regard to whether or not normal development is taking place, as well as help your baby develop these skills further.