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Your Child's Development From 6 to 12 Months

This information describes the skills your child is likely to develop between the ages of 6 and 12 months.

Movement and Physical Development

  • Can get into a sitting position without help.
  • Can sit without support.
  • Can pull up to stand
  • Can walk holding on to furniture (“cruising”).
  • Can take steps while hands are being held.
  • Can stay standing if holding on to an object or person.
  • Can bang 2 objects together.
  • Can easily move things from 1 hand to the other.
  • Can crawl.
  • Can pick things up between thumb and index finger.
  • Can put things in his or her mouth.

Social-Emotional and Self-Help Skills

  • Repeats enjoyable activities.
  • Can be afraid of strangers.
  • Notices and pays attention to own body, including hands, feet, and face.
  • Lifts arms to parent.
  • Responds playfully to seeing self in a mirror.
  • Can be clingy with familiar adults.
  • Has favorite things and people.
  • Shows dislike for certain people or toys.
  • Extends toys to show others.
  • Holds own bottle.
  • Can eat with fingers.
  • Naps 1 to 2 times during the day.
  • Does not resist when you dress him or her.

Learning, Thinking, and Problem Solving Skills

  • Shows interests in sounds or objects.
  • Plays “peek-a-boo.”
  • Plays 2 to 3 minutes with a single toy.
  • Watches the path of something as it falls.
  • Responds to facial expressions.
  • Looks at the right picture or thing when it's named.
  • Finds hidden things easily.
  • Throws objects.
  • Listens to speech without distraction.
  • Understands “no.”
  • Takes apart toys such as puzzles or ring sets.
  • Shows curiosity for things out of reach.

Speech, Language, and Communication Skills

  • Makes different sounds like “mamamama” and “bababababa.”
  • Makes sounds with changes in tone (sounds more like speech).
  • Begins to say consonant sounds: “b,” “m,” “p,” “d,” “t,” “n,” “g,” “k,” “w,” “h,” “f,” “v,” “th,” “s,” “z,” “l,” and “r.”
  • Responds to own name.

What You Can Do to Help Your Child's Development

Although your child is undergoing cancer treatment and may not feel energetic, it is still important to encourage movement, communication, and play as part of his or her daily routine. Here are some things you can do:

  • Place toys at different heights (e.g., on furniture, behind child) and position them around the room to encourage your child to move and change positions.
  • Once your child begins standing, help him or her practice walking by holding them at their tummy.
  • Provide toys that encourage your child to use both hands.
  • Provide toys that encourage your child to take objects out of a container and put them back inside.

Call Your Child’s Doctor If Your Child:

  • Uses only 1 hand to play.
  • Has difficulty crawling or does not crawl.
  • Can't sit without support.
  • Doesn't respond to own name.
  • Doesn't point to things.
  • Loses skills he or she once had.
  • Doesn’t like to change position.
  • Doesn’t like changes in environment (such as noise level or lighting).

Contact Information

If you have questions about your child's development, ask your child's doctor if a referral to the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK) Physical and Occupational Therapy team would be helpful.

MSK Physical and Occupational Therapy
(212) 639-7833
Monday through Friday, 8:00 am to 6:00 pm