Infant development is a time of rapid growth from 0 to 24 months. There are three key points of infant development: cognitive, physical and social. Infants may grow at various rates but follow similar patterns of development from month to month. Genetics and environment both have a role to play on your infant’s development.
Here are three key points of infant development explained and some thoughts on temperament and attachment, too.
Infant interaction is critical to cognitive or mental growth. In order to understand how babies develop cognitively, scholars try to explain how their thought develops. Your infant can scan facial features in the first month and likes designs, shapes and colors. Make sure they are exposed to these things daily. I posted index sized cards of black and white pattern designs on my infant’s swing and near his crib. This entertained him and helped to development his thinking. Also, play infant games or talk to your infant and be sure to have age appropriate toys within your infant’s arm reach.
All babies are active learners and engage in spontaneous activities. Most babies follow the same pattern of motor development. Creeping, crawling, supported walk and freely walking are typically reached by 18 months. Growth can happen quickly, almost overnight. Allow your infant to get her daily exercise safely. Do mom and me exercise class or pop in a DVD and get your infant moving.
Did you know that an infant can distinguish between four basic tastes: salty, sweet, bitter and sour? It’s true, you can tell by the weird expression on their faces when they taste beets for the first time. Be careful serving the family meal to your infant. Most meals are prepared with too many spices or too much salt for your infant to handle. Separate out a portion that isn’t tainted with extra add ins.
Infants first learn to socialize from their parents. Other family members play an important part, too. Attachment and a child’s temperament are a huge part of how your child will adapt socially.
Separation anxiety occurs around 6 months and can last up to a year old. Don’t give in to the tantrum! Your baby will cry like crazy when you hand him off to a sitter but don’t let the tears stream down your cheeks because within a few minutes your infant will be playing with a toy and won’t remember that he was crying earlier.
All infants have their own temperaments. It boils down to four basic temperaments:
- bébé kid: loud, obnoxious, in your face inquisitive
- nice and easy: positive attitude, adaptable, and can entertain themselves
- hard headed: difficult, sometimes negative, and stubborn as a mull
- clown: gets into everything, every word you say is a joke and nothing you say scares them
Understanding the areas of development is an essential part of being good to your baby. Our very essence is formed during infant developmental stages. Proper guidance is a welcomed friend to any parent.