As a new parent, nothing is more satisfying than seeing your baby happy. Seeing them smile for the first time, crawl for the first time, and talk for the first time are momentous achievements to celebrate. But, there also are the smaller milestones, such as lifting their head and turning their face toward a familiar voice, that have a profound impact on your baby’s development.
Milestones are practical guideposts designed to help you identify and celebrate your child’s accomplishments. From birth to 5, ParentPal’s 180 research-based milestones provide you with thoroughly vetted information, giving you a wonderful way to anticipate, encourage, and celebrate your little one’s developments.
Here’s a quick breakdown of milestones to look for in month 8.
Social-Emotional: Cries if left alone
Your baby is starting to learn object permanence—the realization that things exist even when they disappear from view. With that comes separation anxiety. If baby is upset when left alone, reassure him or her by popping back into the room frequently until he or she calms down.
Self Help: Feeds self baby-safe finger food
With baby’s strength, coordination, and fine-motor skills progressing, he or she is now ready to feed him or herself baby-safe food from a highchair. With every bite, your baby’s hand-eye coordination, core strength, and strength and coordination in the arms and hands are improving.
Gross Motor: Sits alone, steady
Your baby has likely been sitting comfortably without assistance for a couple of months now. This has strengthened baby’s arm, neck, and back muscles to allow baby to sit without support. Be sure your little one is seated safely on a padded floor surrounded by pillows should he or she lean a bit too far in any direction.
Fine Motor: Holds two objects
Your baby is now able to pick up an object, move it from one hand to the other, and then pick up and hold a second object…at the same time. This allows baby to view objects from different angles as well as bang them against one another.
Expressive Language: Says “da,” “ba,” “ga”
As your baby gains control of the lips and tongue, he or she begins to experiment with making purposeful consonant/vowel sounds. As baby babbles, he or she is watching for your reaction—sounds you respond to are remembered, and ultimately are used to construct words; sounds you ignore are deemed meaningless and discarded.
Things to Keep in Mind
Remember, it’s not a race and no two babies are alike. Your baby may exhibit some of these behaviors earlier or later than others. Some may simply be skipped. Milestones are meant to be helpful guideposts for parents to ensure their baby is on the right path developmentally.
If you are ever concerned about your child’s development, contact your pediatrician.
Learn more about your baby’s milestones and how you can help foster physical and cognitive development in the ParentPal app.
Want to get a jump start on what to expect next month? Check out our blog on Your Baby’s Development: Month 9.