Babies are in the fastest stage of human development. It’s normal to feel like in the blink of an eye your baby is already “grown up” at five months old. But there’s still a lot to learn!
In this article, we’ll share the developmental milestones that your 5-month-old baby might reach. Remember that every baby develops at their own pace so there is no specific timeframe to achieve these milestones. If you have any questions, it’s always best to talk directly with your pediatrician.
5-month-old baby development milestones
1. Physical development
At this stage, you may notice your baby pulling objects towards themselves or picking up items using the palm of their hand without using their thumb. These are great improvements in their hand coordination!
You can help your child continue to explore by placing objects around them, within reach. Try to choose soft objects, for example, balls or stuffed animals.
You might also notice your baby extending their arms or lifting their upper body during tummy time. These movements aren’t for nothing: they are signs that your little one is getting ready to crawl!
To strengthen your 5-month-old baby‘s muscles, try to incorporate tummy time into your schedule every day. This will help build neck, shoulder, arm, and leg muscle strength. We know tummy time can be a little challenging and uncomfortable, so it’s important to take breaks. Consider putting your little one on your stomach or chest and make funny faces to make tummy time more enjoyable.
It’s also a good idea to help your little one reach for toys. This might seem basic, but it will help your child build a foundation for crawling.
Finally, try to reduce the time your child spends in chairs or baby carriers. Although they are great for keeping your child near you, it’s best if they spend more time on the ground.
2. Linguistic development
Around 5 months, your baby might start to pronounce consonants, for example, the sound “mmm.” Because babies’ language development is largely acquired through imitation, you don’t need to teach your little one every word or sound; talking to them and narrating the world around you is sufficient.
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3. Cognitive development
In this area of development, you may find that your 5-month-old baby is already capable of hitting one object with another. Without a doubt, this is a sign of early exploration. This means that your child is beginning to explore and learn about their surroundings through their hands, mouth, and senses.
Also, your little one will also begin to watch closely how you do things and focus on the conversations that occur around them. This is a sign that they’re developing their memory and attention.
Children’s memory evolves in stages after they are born. At first, it helps them recognize and become familiar with their environment, something very important for them to feel comfortable. But, after four months it will help them identify when someone says their name or calls them. So try to say your baby’s name constantly and refer to yourself as “mom”.
To support your little one in this stage, read with your baby, point to the images, and say aloud the action that the characters are doing, for example, “the monkey is dancing”. You can also use Kinedu to create a personalized activity plan that will foster your little one’s development in each stage. Download the app for free HERE.
4. Social and emotional development
In the first two years of life, babies form attachments with their primary caregivers. This means that the quality of the interactions you have with your little one at this stage is very important for their social and emotional development.
Some of the signs that your child has developed a secure attachment are that they can be away from you, ask for comfort when they are scared, transmit positive emotions when they are reunited with you and, something you may notice around 5 months, is that they prefer to be with you rather than with a stranger.
Developing a secure attachment will help your 5-month-old baby become a confident adult–someone who can express what they feel with ease and is capable of maintaining lasting relationships.
Here are a few tips for forming a secure attachment:
- Have regular physical contact with your child. Hugging them a lot is great for their development.
- Respond to your baby’s crying. If they’re restless, they probably need something from you.
- Talk constantly with your little one.
Do you have any questions about this article? Leave us a comment below! We’d love to hear from you.