Category Archives: Physical

Learning to walk: Your FAQ answered!

Your baby will achieve tons of milestones, but his first steps will definitely be one you won’t forget! Walking is a mayor achievement in your baby’s physical development and, if you are like most parents, you may have questions about the subject and how you can encourage this milestone.

When will my baby start walking?

Generally babies take their first steps between 9 and 15 months, but remember that babies develop at their own pace. So be patient if your little one is taking his time; some babies start walking later on, at around 18 months, and it’s fine!

Did you know that babies are born with an innate knowledge of the movements needed to walk? They just lack the strength in their legs to do it. If you hold your baby in an upright position you will notice he instinctually moves one foot in front of the other in a walking-like motion. This is called the stepping reflex, which disappears when babies are 4 months old.  Continue reading

The first few years: Visual development

Visual development is a sub-domain of the Physical Developmental Area!

Your baby was born with a 20/400 vision –or the equivalent of being legally blind. But not to worry, your baby’s vision will gradually improve. His vision will actually be one of his main tools for learning by taking in all sorts of information about the world around him. Problems with eyesight can cause developmental delays, so make sure your doctor checks your baby’s progress at every visit.

While he can only see out of the periphery in the first few days after birth, your newborn’s not-that-great vision actually serves to protect him from overstimulation. At one month, he will only be able to focus on objects less than 12 inches away! This is about how far the face of the person holding him is, which is mainly what he’ll be interested in anyway. So give him tons of face time, and watch him smile every time he catches a glimpse of your eyes! It is also normal for a baby’s eyes to be crossed the first two months, but eye movements should be coordinated by month three.

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The first few years: Auditory development

This article discusses the development of your baby’s sense of hearing, a sub-domain of the Physical developmental area!

Your baby was born with an excellent sense of hearing, almost as good as an adult’s. He has actually been eavesdropping on your conversations since his 20th week in the womb! So by the time he is born, not only can your baby hear your voice clearly, but he can differentiate between several tones you use, even if he can’t quite understand what you are saying yet. All that practice listening to your conversations has paid off!

Hearing will be important in the development of linguistic, social, and cognitive skills, so checking your baby’s ears before leaving the hospital is recommended. If you don’t get the chance, look for the Moro reflex by startling him with a loud or unexpected noise before the two-month mark, because that’s when the reflex disappears.

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The first few years: Motor development

Motor development is a sub-domain of the Physical Developmental area. Look out for the rest of the area’s articles!

Motor skills, like everything else, are learned and practice is key. In order to develop her motor skills, your baby needs opportunities to strengthen her muscles and coordinate her actions. In her first few months, this will come down to getting enough “tummy-time”, which will strengthen the upper body muscles. When lying on her back, your baby may start lifting her head momentarily and turn her head from side to side. Test her grasp reflex –you can place your finger in her hand, she’ll automatically curl her fingers around it!

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