Developmental milestones 12 months old baby : Social Development

Developmental milestones 12 months old baby


Major motor skills

By 12 months, a baby should be able to rise to a sitting position from lying and pull themselves to standing, as well as be able to lower themselves. Crawling should be well developed and they should be able to walk with hand(s) held. Occasionally a child of this age may be walking unaided, but this is not typically mastered until about 14 months.

Fine motor skills

A 12 month old can typically hold a spoon but cannot use it alone; can drink from a cup with help; and can cooperate with dressing by holding out limbs.


Children often wave goodbye, respond to simple instructions, babble about 2 or 3 words, and understand several words.

Vision and hearing

Children should demonstrate rapid localisation of quiet meaningful sounds and begin to demonstrate everyday visual competence for near and far.

Social achievements and play

Children readily explore and manipulate toys, and often cast objects to the floor repeatedly. If a toy is hidden under a cup or cushion while the child is watching, they should retrieve it. They should know and turn to their own name, as well as comprehend simple commands such as “give me” or “say bye bye”. Often they can clap their hands and give cuddles. Caregivers will often report that they are dependent on familiar adults and demonstrate affection.

When to be concerned

  • Moving around by some means;
  • Pulling themseves up to stand;
  • Laughing/smiling;
  • Trying to attract the attention of caregivers;
  • Copying simple sounds; or
  • Showing an attachment to parents.

More information


  1. Sheridan M. Birth to Five Years: Children’s Developmental Progress (2nd edition). Australian Council for Educational Research; 1997.
  2. Parenting and Child Health: Children, Youth and Women’s Health Service. Child development: 0-3 months [online]. Adelaide: Government of South Australia. 11 September 2008 [cited 31 October 2008]. Available from URL: HealthTopics/ HealthTopicDetails.aspx? p=114&np=122&id=1963

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They are qualified to recommend a kid for

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It's pretty basic stuff. All it is is considering if a child is hitting milestones. If the average age of walking is 12 months, and you have a 15 month old who is not even close, then you can recommend to the parents that they talk to their ped or contact Early Intervention. Perhaps you expect that at 2 year old can talk in short sentences, and you have a 2 year old who isn't doing that. That's not difficult to notice. You don't need an advanced degree. You notice, and you mention it to the parents.
We're not talking advanced diagnosis here. We're talking about noticing if a child doesn't hit developmental milestones.

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Their aim is to lay the foundation for proper psychological, physical and social development of the child. The focus is to reduce the incidence of mortality, morbidity, malnutrition and school drop-out.