The first three months have probably whizzed by and you’re well on your way to parenting pro status. Whoop! And now it gets really interesting. Because over the next couple of months, you’ll see some big changes in their development. From giggling to weaning, this is going to be a fun packed time...
They’re already reaching out, but by around 4 months they can grab and probably hold something for a while. Of course they aren’t pros, so stop the inevitable crying when they drop the ball, so to speak, by giving them a soft toy or rattle. Their grasping skills will continue to improve and by 5 months you may notice they are passing their toy from one hand to another. At around 6 months everything they touch will become exciting, from the texture of the carpet to scrunched up foil, so our choice of baby sensory toys should come in handy. In a range of textures and in bright colours, these are great for their tactile and visual skills too.
Be seeing you
Their vision has really come on since those first few newborn fuzzy images. At around 4 months, they’ll really start to love colour and different shades. Now’s a great time to bring out the brightly coloured soft books. At around 5 to 6 months, they’ll start noticing the tiniest details – your earrings, the flowers on your shirt, the nose on their teddy, so get ready for staring central. They’ll also begin to try to reach out and grab what takes their fancy. Help them enhance their pincer skills with learning toys - whether it’s a clutching toy or baby blocks, they’ll soon be grasping firmly.
Roll over, roll over
For some of us, the next big milestone, after that first smile, is when they roll over. The will vary – some do it at 3 months, some wait until 6 or 7. Regardless, it’ll probably be when you least expect it, and when you’ve literally just nipped out of the room (yes, it happened to us). Although you can’t force this milestone, you can help by giving them lots of playtime on a baby playmat and putting their fave toy by their side. This may just encourage them to roll over and get it.
Hello toothie pegs!
Adorable, but the stuff of parenting woes. And it’s around the 4-6 month stage that your baby's first pegs might start bursting through - although they may not get any until they’re a year. First signs will include gnawing their fist and frantically rubbing their gums in preparation for the trials to come. Red patches on their gums and drooling are also sure fire signs that the first pearly whites - usually a bottom front - is on its way. Help soothe gums with a teether, or grab some teething jewellery if they’re chomping at your necklace or bracelets. Our 11 tactics to tackle teething article may also help ease the pain.
Keep on moving
By 5 months your baby is probably a tummy time pro and over the next month you’ll notice that they’re able to arch their back while lying face down. This is a good exercise that will help them develop their neck muscles so they can eventually crawl, stand and walk. By 6 months, some babies are sitting up and moving on their bums. Encourage them to get a wiggle on with a toy that moves away as they touch it, or start the journey into strengthening their legs by grabbing a baby walker and entertainer. They’re great for buying you a little bit of peace and quiet, too.
Time to munch - Weaning basics
Six months marks a big change in their lives… the transition into solid foods. And there’s going to be a lot you need for the weaning adventure. Notably a good highchair. Not sure about which one to go for? We’ve got it covered with our article on picking the perfect highchair. The kit you choose will vary, depending on whether you go down the puree or baby led weaning route. However, you'll definitely need baby weaning spoons, bowls and a good robust bib. You’ll also want to consider switching up their bottle to their first cup and beaker, but stick to water rather than juices at this stage… it means they won’t get full up on fluids - and it’s better for those emerging teeth, too.
Bye bye roomie
It’s likely that, around about now, you might be thinking about transferring your baby from your bedroom to their nursery. Make it as snug as possible for them as well as you. Things to consider, aside from the obvious pieces of furniture, are nightlights and room thermometers. Got a baby who needs a little bit of comforting? A cot toy may just help soothe them to sleep. May…
And a last little note…
We hope this article was helpful and we’ve put together a comprehensive list of all the best products for your 3-6 month-old at our Shop by Stage: 3-6 months collection. We also know every baby develops at a different pace, so if they’re doing more, have a skim of our Buying Guide for 6-9 months, or see our Buying Guide for 0-3 months if they're taking their time about things. (And why shouldn't they?)