12-Month Milestones

    12-Month Milestones

    Toddlers have their own timetable, so don’t worry if your little one does their own thing at their own pace. Here are some 12-month-old milestones to note in your child.

    12-month milestones for your toddler: Thinking

    • Looks and listens simultaneously
    • Understands how to use many objects (cuddling a stuffed toy, shaking a rattle, putting a cup to their lips)

    • Understands that objects have names

    • Develops object permanence (looks for an object that’s hidden under a blanket knowing it hasn’t disappeared under there)

    • Has increasing attention span (up to 15 minutes)

    • Attracted to novelty (curious about new toys, objects)

    • Explores playthings in multiple ways (touches, bangs, drops)

    • Increasingly displays memory of recent events

    • Follows one-step commands, such as, “Lift your arm”

    12-month milestones for your toddler: Moving

    • Can pick up small objects with fingers (pincer grasp) 
    • Coordination for releasing objects from their grasp improves

    • Points and pokes with index finger

    • Develops self-feeding skills, although messily

    • Drinks from a cup with a spout or an open cup with support

    • May be able to put things into containers

    • Crawls quickly

    • Crawls up stairs

    • Pulls up to a standing position

    • May stand independently for brief periods

    • May cruise along furniture

    • May take first steps or even walk

    12-month milestones for your toddler: Communicating

    • Uses gestures to communicate
    • Shakes head or frowns to express “no”; may respond to “no”

    • Holds out arms to be picked up

    • Recognizes and responds to many words

    • Responds to simple questions and one-step commands

    • Babbles in long groups of consonant-vowel sounds, like “tata upupup ba ba ba!”

    • Uses the cadence and verbal inflections of real conversation

    • May use “Mama” and “Dada” to refer specifically to parents

    • May say other early words

    12-month milestones for your toddler: Understanding

    • Mimics expressions and sounds made by others
    • Imitates actions of others

    • Interested in watching older children

    • Interested in being around other babies, but doesn’t play with them yet

    • Watches for your reactions in various situations (to banging, laughing, etc.)

    • Shows stranger anxiety (shy around strangers)

    • Shows separation anxiety (cries or exhibits distress when you leave the room)

    • Increased affection with family

    • Waves goodbye

    And those are the 12-month-old milestones for your toddler. Find out what exciting milestones are in store for year 2. Happy birthday, little one!  

    I soon realized that every baby is not cookie-cutter and cannot be exactly the same as someone else's baby. To each their own! – Enfamil® mom