We’ve previously talked about how your baby’s vision is one of her main tools for learning and taking in all sorts of information about the world around her. Your little one’s first six months are a very important time in which she begins developing her hand-eye coordination, a skill she’ll need every day throughout her life. During this time, you’ll notice how she starts gaining strength and making new movements in an attempt to explore her surroundings. In this article we’ll talk about the specific movements she’ll accomplish and mention things you can do to keep fostering her development.

First month

During her first month of life, your little one is beginning to adapt to her environment. This is a period of adjustment for her, so she’ll need you to empathize and attune to her needs. Skin-to-skin contact will make her feel safe and loved. Help her relax by gently massaging her hands, feet, and face. Gently massage her hands and the sole of her feet using your thumbs. Caress her ears and gently pass your fingers from her eyebrows to her chin in a heart-shaped way. Her eyes are one of the first things you’ll see her move. She’ll only be able to see about a foot away, but that’s enough to see you. She might try to look toward familiar voices and make little kicks when lying faced up. As she develops this sense of security, you’ll notice she starts opening her tight and tiny hands. These are her very first moves in the attempt to get to know what’s around her. Make her feel she’s in a secure space to unwind by rocking her using rhythmical movements and holding her in fetal positions against your chest. This way she’ll sense your touch and feel protected.

Second month

During this month you’ll notice how your love and touch are making your little one feel confident enough to start stretching. Tummy time we’ll be a great way for her to begin stretching her hands and legs. Having your face or a bright toy in front of her will encourage her to slowly lift her head up. Your baby’s vision, head control, and muscle strength are being fostered during these meaningful interactions with you. Since she’s discovering her hands, she might attempt to see them and wave her arms when she is excited. After many tries, she’ll move them to her mouth and sucking will become a way of soothing herself.

Third month

During this time your little one might be able to hold a small object on her hand. She’ll be able to support her upper body when lying on her stomach and even take swings at dangling objects. You’ll notice a dramatic transformation from a totally dependent newborn to an active and responsive infant. Her movements will be much more coordinated, and she’ll be able to follow moving objects and shake a small toy like a rattle. She’ll acquire more voluntary control and strength. She’ll also begin pushing down on her legs when standing on a firm surface. You’ll notice her body is much more relaxed; she might entertain herself by opening and closing her hands, or by kicking and raising her legs. Foster her self-discovery and creative play by making a playground area for her. Use a soft blanket and noisy toys to encourage her to discover foot and eye-hand movements.

Fourth month

This month your little one will be so responsive, she’ll be able to open her hand when you hand her something as if expecting contact. She’ll love grabbing her feet when lying face up and follow colorful moving toys. The past months will have helped her establish the muscle control needed to take on bigger challenges like rolling over and sitting up. You’ll see she’s able to support her own weight when you hold her on a flat surface. You’ll see she gets stronger every day and that she’ll even attempt to sit up when you gently pull her by the hands. Eventually she’ll be able to stay sited when you support her back with a pillow or furniture. Even though she’s taking on bigger challenges, it is very important to keep tummy time a regular thing. This way she’ll keep practicing her movements and coordination to keep strengthening her neck, shoulders, and trunk. Grab a colorful book and enjoy it while you are both on your tummies, she’ll be excited to reach forward and touch it.

Fifth month

Your little will gain so much strength, she’ll be able to hold bigger objects with her hands. She’ll not only attempt to reach for objects when playing on her tummy, but she’ll also be able to grab them. Her chest and arms are getting so strong, she’ll start pushing up on her arms and arching her back to lift her chest. This strengthens her upper body and prepares her muscles to remain steady and upright when sitting. Your baby’s movements will be so coordinated, she’ll be able to grab an object using both hands at the same time. Play with different sounds so that she can practice following them and turning towards them. Use a mirror to stimulate her sense of exploration and self-awareness. You’ll see her curiosity makes her reach for it and explore parts of her body she didn’t even know existed. With every little movement she’ll be learning about balance and weight shifting.

Sixth month

Your love and dedication will get your little one ready to sit without support. Her movements will be so strong and coordinated that she’ll be able to hold two objects at the same time. Her growing hand-eye coordination will also allow her to transfer objects from one hand to the other. Her core will be strong enough to roll over both ways and start experimenting with going from laying down to sitting up by herself. Through these explorations she’ll become even more curious about her surroundings. She’ll also become more aware of different sensations and you’ll see small movements like curling the toes up and stroking the carpet to feel different textures.

Keep it up! Soon, she’ll be making larger movements and tackle bigger milestones like crawling and walking!

Check out this article to learn more about her future physical milestones.

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