7 Ways to Help an Infant Reach Major Milestones
If you’ve recently welcomed a new baby to the world, you’re likely already thinking about all the ways you want to protect him or her. Not only will you do everything to keep your baby safe. But you’re already wondering how you can help your baby grow and develop. Babies begin growing and developing from the day they are born, but that first month should focus on sleeping, eating, and cuddling. And then, it’s time to start helping your baby’s developmental skills. Here are 7 ways you can help your infant reach major milestones that will set your baby up for success in the future.
Read to Your Baby Regularly
It’s a great idea to read to your baby every day. Even though babies don’t understand words yet, hearing you read is a great way to stimulate your baby’s mind. Reading teaches communication skills. And as you express emotions and sounds, it develops how your baby understands social and emotional cues. Reading will also teach your baby language, concepts like numbers and letters, and it helps teach memory skills. It also builds an emotional connection between you and your baby, who loves hearing your voice. Be sure to read with expression in your voice so they pick up on those cues from an early age.
Practice Tummy Time
Tummy time is a critical part of your baby’s growth. When your baby is awake, be sure to put your baby on his or her belly regularly. As newborns, your baby should practice tummy time at least 2 to 3 times a day for 3 to 5 minutes. As your baby gets older, tummy time can last a bit longer. This time is important for resting your baby’s head and preventing flat spots from being on her back for too long. In addition, tummy time begins to build your baby’s back, neck, and muscle shoulders, which will assist in crawling, sitting up, rolling over, and walking.
Enjoy Music Together
Listening to music is a great way to help an infant reach major milestones. Research shows music can stimulate a baby’s brain and teach language faster than without music. Babies that hear music regularly understand patterns better, which helps teach language skills. Research also shows that playing music is a great way to stimulate the brain as well. In other words, you should do more than simply listen to music with your baby. You should pick up a tambourine or shaker and play together, too. It will go a long way in helping your baby develop the part of the brain that can master a language.
If you have mirrors in your home, go hunting for them with your baby. Playing with a mirror is a fascinating way to show your baby the world around him. Mirrors help babies understand social and emotional awareness and they teach self-awareness. Be sure to point out your baby’s face in the mirror as he starts to explore. Point out his eyes, nose, and ears so he can learn language. By the time he realizes he’s the one in the mirror around toddlerhood, your baby will have sound self-awareness as he grows and develops.
One of the most delightful ways to help an infant reach major milestones is to go explore the world around your baby. The more you take your baby outdoors, the more you expose her to the world. Your baby’s senses will ignite when she gets to feel the wind on her face, experience sand slipping through her fingers, or see a brightly colored leaf. It can be as simple as taking a walk with your baby, having a picnic together, or playing at the beach. Once you’re outside, your baby can work on stimulating those senses and learning about the world around her. These early skills learned outdoors will last a lifetime.
Talk to Each Other
Babies start trying to communicate from the time they’re born. To help encourage that communication, it’s important to talk to your baby from day one. When your baby cries, be sure to talk to him about what he must be feeling. Let him know you hear him. Your baby will soon start to learn how to communicate in return. Be sure to encourage your baby and show that you’re listening and understanding what he’s saying. It will give your baby the confidence to begin using his voice and body to communicate.
Give Baby Age-Appropriate Toys for Playtime
Babies love playing, but you’ll need to make sure that you’re giving your infant toys that are safe for those early days of development. Simple toys that are too big to swallow are important to keeping your baby safe. Choose rattles, teething toys, textured balls, and board books that will be hard to destroy but stimulate your baby. Toys that make noises, crinkle, and arouse their senses are great ways to help an infant reach major milestones. Make sure you monitor your baby while she plays to keep her safe.
Let PALS Help Your Child Grow
If you’re fully focused on finding ways to help an infant reach major milestones, you’re probably already thinking about first steps for preschool and infant care, too. That’s why you should get in touch with PALS Praise & Leadership Schools. Thanks to our school’s innovative curriculum, PALS provides your infant with an outstanding foundation for building self-esteem, moral character, as well as basic skills. Our school is designed to set them up for a lifetime of success. PALS students learn to think, reason, be responsible, achieve, excel, and communicate well, and they do so long before they reach their adult years. PALS is the school you need to help your child be his or her best.
In addition, PALS offers two great campuses in the Peoria area. And both offer the same high standards of care for your child. If you’re interested in scheduling a tour of one of our two facilities, or simply learning more, get in touch. You can contact us at our North Peoria campus, which is located at 2327 W Willow Knolls Rd in Peoria IL, at 309-228-2505. Or feel free to call our Downtown Peoria campus, which is located at 700 NE Greenleaf in Peoria IL, at 309-740-4463. We know once you visit you’ll see what is so outstanding about a PALS education.