18 Things Your Baby Should Be Doing By Age One

My daughter is turning one year old this week and aside from being totally devastated about it (I know, I know, I'm such a cliche, but I can't help it, I want her to stay little forever!), I also wonder if she on track with all of her developmental milestones. 

For example, all of my other children were walking by age one and my daughter definitely is not. In fact, she only started crawling last month!

(Side note: she may be a bit of a diva, she is our youngest after all...)

Logically and rationally, of course, I know that every baby develops differently and I know that it's perfectly fine that she hasn't started walking yet. But I still want to know what to look for in case there would be any delays in her development and I do think it's important for us as parents to know the important milestones for babies at one-year-old. My daughter hasn't had her one-year-old check-up just yet, so until we take her in, I'm brushing up on what milestones she should be reaching so we can discuss any potential issues with her pediatrician then. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, here are a few important developmental milestones that babies should be reaching by age one:

Social Development

  • Shows signs of "stranger danger" by getting nervous around strangers and new situations or crying when caregivers leave.
  • Shows repetitive behavior to get attention, such as throwing food off of the high chair and giggling about it.
  • Plays classic baby games, such as "Peek-a-Boo".
  • Has a few favorite special items, like a blanket, pacifier, or book. 

Language Development

  • Can shake head "no"
  • Waves
  • Says simple first words, such as "mama" or "dada"
  • Imitates caregiver's speech
  • Uses tone changes while trying to talk. For example, if your baby says, "Uh-oh!" with his/her voice rising at the end. 

Cognitive Development

  • Loves to explore. Cupboards, anyone?
  • Can put simple items in a container, like blocks in a basket
  • Imitates using items, such as brushing hair 
  • Enjoys banging items together to make noise
  • Can listen to simple directions, such as "give me a kiss" (baby slobber for the win!)

Physical Development

  • Can move into a sitting position on his/he own
  • Can pull self up to a standing position
  • Starts to take steps while holding on to other things, such as furniture or an adult's hands
  • Starts to try to stand alone

So look at that--my daughter is totally normal, even though she's not walking yet! I don't know I assumed that babies should be walking by age one, but there you have it, it's not a developmental milestone. 

However, the CDC also notes that if your baby isn't crawling, speaking at all, or seems to be losing skills by age one, to speak to your child's doctor as soon as possible. 

Again, it is important to remember that these milestones are a guide on what "most" children can do and every baby can develop differently. However, it never hurts to be prepared and to discuss any potential delays you may notice with your child's care provider.



Milestones at 1 Year. (March 2014). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/actearly/milestones/milestones-1yr.html. 

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