10 to 12 Months
Babies learn by watching and imitating you.
Encouraging Your Baby
Your baby cannot control his reactions. He may get frustrated, cranky or angry. Encourage his efforts with positive feedback such as “hurray” or “good job”. This will help him feel good about himself and encourage him to try new things.
Understanding Your Baby
Your baby may now:
- Understand familiar words
- Pull himself up to a standing position
- Drop things into a small opening or container
- Wave bye-bye
- Crawl, creep or move from one place to another
- Crawl around and over things
- Walk while holding onto something
- Follow simple directions
- Look at pictures in a book
- Begin to stoop
- Roll a ball
- Babble as if speaking
- Tear paper
- Imitate gestures
- Say a few recognizable words
- Turn pages of a hard-paged book
- Make a stack of two blocks
- Spend more time doing an activity
- Show interest in objects that are farther away
- Help pull off simple clothing
- Fit one thing into another
- Know where familiar objects are kept
Caring for Your Baby
- Continue to breastfeed on demand, and to give your baby a daily vitamin D supplement of 400 IU.
- From 12 months on, your child should begin to have a regular schedule of meals and snacks.
- Offer energy-dense, nutritious foods to your baby.
- Don’t limit the fat in your baby’s diet – it’s not necessary at this age.
- Do limit foods high in sugar and salt.
- Work up to the amounts and types of foods recommended in Canada’s Food Guide. Your baby should be eating about ¼ to ½ of adult serving sizes.
- Eat together as a family as often as possible.
- As a parent, you are responsible for what, when and where food is offered. Let your child decide how much he wants to eat or whether he wants to eat at all.
- Remember, babies can choke easily. To prevent choking:
- Don’t give your baby foods that are hard, small and round like nuts, popcorn, whole grapes or hard vegetables.
- Finely chop foods that have a fibrous or stringy texture, such as pineapples and celery.
- Grate carrots and hard fruits such as apples.
- Remove pits from fruits.
- Cut grapes.
- Spread peanut butter thinly on toast and crackers.
- Offer small portions and let your child ask for more.
- Offer a variety of nutritious foods at meals and snacks.
- Keep an eye on how much milk or water your child drinks.
- Encourage positive mealtimes.
Helping Your Baby Grow and Discover
At this age, your baby will like:
- Playing with toys that require him to use his fingers to press something down (e.g. pop-up toys, a toy piano)
- Rolling a ball back and forth
- Placing objects in and out of each other, stacking and knocking down objects (e.g. containers, stacking cups, pots and pans)
Crawling and walking together
Your baby must first learn to crawl before he walks.Practise crawling with him and encourage him to crawl after a toy. Once your baby can sit up and crawl, he may be ready to pull himself to a standing position.
Singing and reading together
- Use music to promote your child’s language development. Sing songs like “Pop Goes the Weasel” or “Pat-a-Cake, Pat-a-Cake, Baker’s Man”.
- Introduce reading at bedtime. It will be a routine you can use for years to come.
- Encourage your baby to turn the pages of a book and discover the joy of reading.
Your child’s behaviour
Babies learn by watching and imitating you. Avoid physical punishment such as slapping, hitting or spanking. Instead, try the following:
- Acknowledge your child’s feelings, but set limits: “I know you’re sad, but no biting.”
- Acknowledge positive behaviour: “You’re eating with a spoon. Great job.”
- Say “no” while maintaining love: “I love you, but I don’t love what you’re doing.”
- Redirect your child’s attention: “It’s not OK to draw on the wall, but here is some paper you can use.”
Source: The First Years Last Forever. Canadian Institute of Child Health.
Triple P: Positive Parenting Program
Your child didn’t come with an instruction manual. And with each child being so different, how is any parent supposed to know what works best when it comes to handling certain behaviours? The Triple P: Positive Parenting Program provides solutions for a wide variety of parenting situations. Learn more about Triple P at .
Children are more at risk of contracting communicable diseases because of their age, their personal hygiene and because of close contact with other children. Some childhood diseases can be very dangerous to children and sometimes fatal. In Ontario, children can receive vaccines against most childhood diseases free of charge. Make sure your child is up-to-date with his immunizations as many are offered during his first year.
Don’t forget to record it in your child’s immunization record (yellow booklet). You must also report each vaccine received to the Eastern Ontario Health Unit. You can submit your report online (as well as access your vaccine records) at www.EOHU.ca/myimmunization. You can also report vaccine updates to the EOHU via phone, email, fax, or mail.