How can you encourage your baby’s learning?
  • Display delight, encouragement and enthusiasm for their achievements
  • Make and play with sounds together
  • Get into a routine – eat, sleep, play, repeat
  • Make positive eye contact as often as possible
  • Talk and sing to them
  • Play simple games e.g. peek-a-boo
  • Smile back when he or she smiles at you
What are some of the different developmental milestones you can observe?

Physical

  • moves whole body
  • squirms, waves arms, moves legs up and down
  • the emergence of eating and sleeping patterns
  • responds to being placed on a flat surface
  • reacts to sudden loud noises
  • head turns to side when cheek touched
  • sucking motions with mouth (seeking nipple)
  • responds to gentle touching, cuddling, rocking
  • shuts eyes tight in bright sunlight
  • able to lift head and chest when laying on stomach
  • begins to roll from side to side
  • starts reaching to swipe at dangling objects
  • able to grasp object that is put into hands

Social

  • smiles and laughs
  • makes eye contact when held about 20cm from face of adult looking at them
  • may sleep most of the time
  • alert and preoccupied with faces
  • moves head to sound of voices

Emotional

  • bonding
  • cries (peaks at about six to eight weeks and levels off at about 12-14 weeks)
  • cries when hungry or uncomfortable and usually stops when held
  • shows excitement as parent prepares for feeding

Cognitive

  • smiles and laughs
  • looks toward direction of sound
  • eyes track slow moving targets for brief periods e.g. follows your finger
  • looks at edges, patterns with light/dark contrast and faces
  • mimics adult tongue movements when being held and talked to
  • learns through sensory experiences
  • repeats actions but unaware of ability to cause actions

Language

  • cries
  • when content makes small throaty noises e.g. coos and gurgles (makes ‘goo’ and ‘gah’ sounds)
  • soothed by sound of voice or by low rhythmic sounds
  • mimics adult tongue movements when being held and talked to
  • may start to copy sounds
  • expresses needs i.e. by making sounds or actions

Please seek advice from your local community health worker or doctor if your baby is:

  • floppy or stiff
  • crying a lot
  • arching his/her back
  • not responding to sounds
  • not showing interest or responding when played with
  • not feeding as expected
  • not starting to make sounds
  • not responding to familiar faces