What’s going on for baby?

A baby during this period is getting more mobile, moving around and exploring what they can see, reach and manipulate. They’ll be grasping, mouthing, shaking, banging, dropping —and then throwing — objects to see what happens, and what they can make happen.

They’ll also repeat actions that have interesting effects — for example, pressing a button to make a noise. These types of activities create many new connections in their brain.

Repetition makes these connections stronger. As connections get insulated with a fatty coating called ‘myelin’, they allow messages to travel quickly and efficiently, becoming permanent pathways in their brains.

How can parents and whānau help?

Make sure baby can explore safely. Check and make safe:

  • drinks and food items left within reach
  • household cleaners
  • heaters, fires and ovens
  • indoor plants
  • medications
  • poisons
  • poisonous plants
  • plugs and electrical cords
  • steps and stairs — teach baby to come down backwards
  • windows.

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