My Baby is 6 Months Old: What should he/she be able to do?
Your baby is now approaching 6 months of age and continues to surprise you day by day with his/her new skills. Here are the things you should expect your child to do by 6 months of age.
By 6 months of age, your child should be able to:
Gross Motor/Physical Movement
Roll in both directions (tummy to back and back to tummy)
Sit with support (with something behind his/her back or with his/her hands down for support)
Bear weight on legs and may bounce when feet are on flat surface
May get up on all fours and rock back and forth (usually not crawling yet)
Fine Motor/Hand-Eye Coordination
Pass toys from one hand to the other
Recognizes familiar faces and may begin to show stranger anxiety
Likes to play with others, especially parents and siblings
React to other people’s emotions and often seems happy
Likes to look at self in mirror
Respond to sounds by making sounds and likes to take turns making sounds
Respond to his/her own name (by turning his/her head or looking at you)
Make different sounds to show joy and displeasure
Babble using long vowel sounds (“aaah,” “eee,” “ooo”)
Cognitive/Learning & Problem-solving
Look around at things nearby
Bring toys to mouth
Show curiosity about things and try to get things that are out of reach (may roll, squiggle, or wiggle, to try to get to something out of reach)
If your child is 6 months old and is doing all of these things, great!!
Tips to Help Your Child Reach Their 6 Month Milestones
Play time: Create time each day for your child to play with toys and let them explore (a playmat on the floor is a great place to do this).
Talk and respond: Talk to your baby as much as possible and respond when he/she talks or makes sounds. Showing your baby that their vocalizations will get a response helps to foster social and conversational skills and encourages your baby to continue "talking".
Smile and play: Smile at and play with your child often. Make lots of facial expressions. Your child is still studying and learning the differences in the tone of your voice and the facial expressions you make.
Read: Read simple books to your child and use a lot of expression in your storytelling. This will help to keep your child engaged and they will likely smile and giggle along if they see you are enjoying it too.
When to Be Worried
If your child is already 6 months of age and is not meeting these milestones, talk to your child’s pediatrician. You know your child better than anyone else. If you are concerned your child may have a delay in his/her development, it is better to intervene sooner rather than later. This gives your child the best chance of catching up to his/her peers by the time he or she reaches school age.
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