We hope you and your baby are enjoying new things.
This is a very active period for your baby, so safety is important. Keep small objects out of her reach and make sure to stay with her when she’s on the changing table, on a bed or couch, and when you’re giving her a bath.
Your baby is building his own personality, so you probably know his favorite foods, toys, and songs. (You’re most likely also starting to know what he doesn’t like, too). Encourage your baby to try new things to promote his development. Celebrate with a smile or clapping when he achieves something new, like rolling over or standing up.
Talk with other parents and your child’s doctor about the milestones your child has reached. They can also let you know what to expect next.
What to Expect at 8 Months
- Your baby is now able to follow simple instructions. Try giving her directions, like “Hold the diaper,” “wash your belly,” or “show me grandma.” When she responds, make sure to let her know you notice: “Thank you for holding the diaper,” “Oh, there’s grandma.”
- Your baby may be standing now. Place some of his favorite toys on a low table or on the ground so he can stretch and work on his balance.
- Your baby wants your attention, and she will make different sounds to get it. Let her know you are there and listening: “Oh you’re sad. Let me help you feel better”, “You are tired, time for a nap.”
- Ask for behaviors that you want in a positive way. For example, instead of saying “don’t stand” say “time to sit down.”
Activities to Help your Baby Grow and Learn
- Read to your baby every day. He may like one book in particular, and that’s great; children learn by repetition. Name the colors, animals, or objects you see and ask the baby to point at them with you.
- Place a toy or a piece of cereal in a container or a plastic bottle with no lid. As your baby works to get the toy or the cereal out, she will learn about the idea of ‘in’ and ‘out.’ Another way to show your baby ‘inside’ and ‘outside’ is to get a big box that she can crawl in and out of.
- Encourage your baby to help you with simple tasks like picking up toys or putting away clothes. You can sing a cleanup song as you do this. This is a great way to make your baby feel included and build a sense of responsibility.
Most importantly, enjoy watching your baby grow and learn!
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends screening all children for general development at nine months. The Ages & Stages Questionnaire (ASQ) is a great tool to see if your child’s development is on track. For more information about the ASQ, see our Q&A on ASQ (https://211connectingpoint.org/a-qa-on-asq/) or give us a call at 211.
ASQ-3 Learning Activities, Elizabeth Twombly and Ginger Fink
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention www.cdc.gov/Milestones