How parents can help
As a parent, it is a pleasure to get involved in your 5-month-old baby's development. Parents play a critical role in promoting infant development socially and physically. At this age, learning and play are inseparable. Hence, spend time with your baby to help them reach their developmental milestones
Communication and language development
Talking to your baby
You can promote your child’s development by
- Asking questions to your child.
- Responding to your child’s coos and gurgles.
- Describing what you see, hear and smell to your child.
- Using simple words such as baby, cat, go, hot, walk and cold.
Read to your baby
Reading to your baby develops speech and thought.
- Make sounds while reading, so that your child mimics them.
- Use large, brightly-colored picture books.
- Point to and name some common objects.
Physical or motor development
You should often change the baby's position by laying them on their abdomen for a few minutes while you supervise them. While the baby lies on their abdomen
- Hold a colorful toy to make noises to encourage your baby to lift their head.
- Hold your baby’s hand and gently pull them up to a standing position.
- Once your baby’s ready, try a sitting position. Make sure to place pillows for support or hold the baby while they sit.
Play favorite games
Try playing favorite games with your baby to develop their physical and motor skills.
- Play peekaboo with your child.
- Hide one of your baby’s toys with the corner of a blanket and encourage them to find it.
- Ask your child playfully, “Where are your toes?” then touch your child’s toes and say, “Here are your toes!”
Offer simple toys
Babies at this age often enjoy colorful toys, especially those that make sounds. You can
- Try a musical toy, rattle with a handle, softball or wooden spoon.
- Put out only one or two toys at a time for your baby to focus on.
- Place one toy out of reach to encourage your baby to stretch and creep.
- Shake a rattle behind your baby’s head and let them turn and grab it.
Social and emotional development
Take time to cuddle
Give your baby all the cuddles and love that they deserve. Also, do not forget to
- Give gentle caresses and tender kisses to make your baby feel safe and secure.
- Hold or rock your baby and talk slowly or sing soothing songs.
- Cuddle, talk and play with your baby while feeding, dressing and bathing.
- Hold, talk to and smile at your baby.
Let the child set their pace
- Give your baby a break when they are upset or fussy.
- Try to understand their unique personality, temperament, likes and dislikes.
- Respond to your baby’s needs to build trust.
Turn on the music
Sing to your child or play music to calm, entertain or teach your baby.
Also, pick up a toy when the baby drops it on the floor and give it back to help teach cause-and-effect.
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Top How Can I Help My 5-Month-Old Baby’s Development Related Articles
Baby's First Year: Milestones Month by MonthWhen do babies learn to crawl? Start teething? Learn about major milestones in your baby's first months. Get tips on how to help baby learn, grow, and develop into a healthy toddler.
Get the Facts About Bottle FeedingDo you need to warm a bottle? What's the best way to burp your baby? Find out what you need to know about bottle feeding and infant formula.
Baby's 1st Yr SlideshowWhat developmental milestones can you expect to see during baby's first year? Find out when babies learn to smile, laugh, crawl, and talk.
Breastfeeding (and Formula Feeding)It's important to know whether you will breastfeed or bottle-feed your baby prior to delivery, as the breasts' ability to produce milk diminishes soon after childbirth without the stimulation of breastfeeding. Breast milk is easily digested by babies and contains infection-fighting antibodies and cholesterol, which promotes brain growth. Formula-fed babies actually need to eat somewhat less often since formula is less readily digested by the baby than human milk. This article explores the advantages and disadvantages of both forms of feeding.
Can Babies Grow Out of Tongue-Tie?If tongue-tie is left alone, it will often resolve itself as the baby's mouth grows. However, in some cases, surgery for tongue-tie may be required.
How Do I Know if My Baby Is Developing Normally?The development of your child begins right after birth. What are the signs that your child is developing normally? Learn how to spot when something is wrong.
How Long Do Babies Have Their Mother's Immune System?Babies can enjoy extended protection from their mother's immune systems for a great deal longer if they are breastfed.
What Are the 3 Types of Baby Cries?Babies cry to tell you their needs. They usually cry for 2-3 hours a day. Sometimes, a bawling baby can be distressing to the anxious parents. Babies may wail for no obvious reason.
What Are the 5 Stages of Child Development?Children undergo various changes in terms of physical, speech, intellectual, and cognitive development until adolescence. The five stages of child development include the newborn, infant, toddler, preschool, and school-age stages.
What Are the 6 Stages of Brain Development?The 6 stages of brain development that happen in the first three years of your life have lasting impacts.
When Can I Make a Baby Sit?Most babies can sit at about 9 months and may be able to get in and out of a sitting posture with a little support. Learn about child development milestones.
When Should I Worry About My Child’s Development?Learn the different types of delayed development and find out about the different warning signs of developmental delays.