Congratulations! You’ve made it 6 months or half a year already!
You’re probably starting to feel more confident as a parent and really starting to get a hang of this parenting thing.
By this point, your sleepy newborn has transitioned into a playful and curious infant who’s learning about the world.
6 months is such an exciting time for your baby as they’re more alert and more coordinated. They’re ready to grab and interact with toys.
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6 Month Old Milestones: What Should 6 Month Olds Be Doing?
6 months old is a time of so many exciting milestones. This is my favorite age because your baby is playful and ready to interact with you.
Learn what a baby should be doing at 6 months old plus activities for 6 month old babies.
All of the milestones are adapted from CDC guidelines.
Social Milestones at 6 Months Old
- Understand Stranger Vs Family Member
- Loves to Play with Parents and Siblings
- Understands Emotions
- Likes to Look at Self in Mirror
By 6 months old, your little one has a really good grasp on who’s a stranger and who’s a loved one. They’ll greet you with squeals of excitement whenever you return home.
Also, they may become uncomfortable or upset around strangers.
No more handing your baby off to just anyone.
Your 6-month-old also craves attention and loves when you play with them. This is the best time to consciously put distractions and phones away and play together.
Additionally, your baby can pick up on your emotions. If you’re happy and smiling, they’ll smile back.
They love looking at themselves in the mirror and will love to smile back at the happy baby they see. Make sure to have a safe mirror around for your little one to play with.
Language Development at 6 Months Old
- Imitate Sounds and Babble
- String Vowels Together and Make “B” and “M” Sounds
- Responds to Their Name
At 6-months old, your baby is ready for their first “conversations”. They’ll try to imitate sounds they hear you make.
It’s so fun to say something to your little one and then wait and hear what they have to say. They’ll love to babble in response to your questions.
At this age, your baby can string vowel sounds together and say “ah, eh, oh”. They also start making their first b and m sounds.
Spend some time “talking” back and forth with your little one. Practice different sounds together and see what your little one is capable of saying.
Also, your baby knows what their name is and responds if you call his or her name. Your baby is getting ready to communicate and play with the family.
Learning and Thinking at 6 Months Old
- Bring Hands to Their Mouths
- Curious about Toys and Tries to Grab Them
- Pass Objects from Hand to Hand
6-month-olds love to look at objects around the room. They’ve mastered bringing things to their mouths, so nothing is safe anymore.
Make sure all small objects are safely out of reach. Also, this is a good time to remove any dangerous cords or wires from their room.
Your baby is also curious about different objects and toys and will try to reach and grab them.
By 6 months, your little one can also pass objects from hand to hand.
This is a great time to introduce different textured toys and balls for them to grab and play with.
This set is perfect for small hands and is safe if it ends up in their mouths or thrown around.
Movement and Physical Development at 6 Months Old
- Rocks Front and Back and May Crawl Backward
- Roll in Both Directions
- Sits Without Support
- Supports Weight When Standing
Your little one is getting closer and closer to crawling at this point.
By 6 months old, your baby may start rocking front and back while on hands and knees. Your little one may also scoot backward.
By 6 months, your baby will be able to roll from their back to their stomachs and back again. Be very careful wherever you place your little one because they’re on the go!
Don’t leave them unattended on a changing table or any high surface because they can easily roll right off.
Also, by 6 months, your little one will start sitting without support. This is a fun stage because they can now play and see toys at a whole new angle.
Even though they’re sitting up, make sure not to give up on tummy time. It is still very important to help develop muscles for upcoming crawling.
Introducing Solids to Baby
Welcome to the fun world of solid foods!
This was one of my favorite milestones to reach with my little one.
Although you may have started introducing solids earlier, a lot of providers recommend waiting until your baby is 6 months old.
Make sure to get the okay from your pediatrician before you start introducing any solids.
Once you’re cleared to start trying, the fun begins. You can pick whatever first food you’d like, but there are a few general guidelines.
Introducing Solid Foods to Baby
A lot of people choose to start with rice or oatmeal mixed with breastmilk or formula, but you don’t have to.
Just make sure whatever food you choose that it’s soft and small enough for your little one.
This is the first time they’re putting anything other than a liquid into their mouths, so they won’t know how to chew right away.
After you introduce one food, wait 3-4 days before introducing another one. This way, if your baby is allergic to a food, you’ll know exactly which food caused the allergy.
Once you know your baby isn’t allergic, you can start combining foods for more flavors.
Lastly, avoid honey in babies younger than 1-years-old. Other than that, start slow and introduce your baby to as many foods as possible.
Studies have shown the more flavors you introduce babies and young children to, the less picky they will be later in life.
Our favorite spoons for feeding our infant were these bamboo spoons with silicone tips. They’re perfect for small mouths and are BPA free, phthalate, lead, and PVC free.
Baby Sleep at 6 Months Old
By 6 months of age, you can expect your little one to sleep about 2 to 3 naps per day and approximately 11-12 hours at night.
You’ll notice awake time will continue to increase and your little one will stay awake longer in between naps.
Make sure that you’ve established a good bedtime routine by now so your little one will be able to fall asleep easily on their own.
Also, by 6 months the risk of SIDS has gone significantly down. This is the time that a lot of parents decide to move their little ones into their own rooms.
If you’re a light sleeper like me, this is a big deal!
Babies are noisy sleepers, so having them in their own room may help you catch some better sleep!
Don’t panic if you find your baby on their stomach in the middle of the night. After they learn how to roll in both directions, this is okay.
They’re old enough to roll back and wake up if they’re not comfortable.
If your baby is not sleeping well, try these baby sleep tips to get them on track.
6 Month Old Baby Growth
By the age of 6 months, your little one has just about doubled in weight. However, at 6 months, this growth rate slows down a little bit.
For the next 6 months, expect your baby to gain about 1 pound per month.
Also, they’ll keep growing taller, but at a slower rate. They’ll grow about 1/2 an inch each month until their first birthday.
Additionally, by 6 months of age, you may see the first tooth starting to sprout. Learn all about when babies teethe and typical symptoms of teething babies.
Warning Signs of 6-Month-Old Development
These are the typical milestones for 6-month-old babies. All babies develop at different paces and may not reach all milestones at once.
However, if your little one doesn’t respond to their name, doesn’t show any affection towards caregivers, doesn’t try to reach for toys, seems very stiff and rigid or very loose and flopping, it’s important to talk with your healthcare provider.
Early intervention for any delays is effective and provides so many benefits long-term for your child. Don’t be afraid to speak up if you’re concerned about anything.
6-Month-Old Developmental Activities
Now that we know what our little ones should be able to do by 6 months, let’s see how we can play with them.
As I mentioned, 6-month-olds love to play with parents and caregivers, so any time you get down and play with them they’ll be happy.
Your little one is getting stronger and closer and closer to crawling. Tummy time is very important for this age group as they’re finalizing the last steps.
Try to put toys a little bit out of their reach to help them practice reaching with one arm. If your little one is determined enough, they may even surprise you and scoot closer to it!
Also, you can get down on all 4 in front of your baby. They will get a kick out of playing with you in tummy time.
Try these tummy time activities to keep your baby entertained and happy during tummy time.
This is my favorite activity at every age. Reading is one of the most important activities for language development, bonding, and overall development.
My favorite books for 6-month-olds are:
Singing and Listening to Music
Similarly to reading, singing helps to develop language and understanding with our babies. Also, music is a fun time to bond, learn rhythms, and dance.
You can listen to either kid-friendly songs or your favorite tunes.
Babies enjoy the rhythm of nursery rhymes and simple songs, so it’s a good time to add those to your repertoire as well. If you use Pandora or any free music streaming, you’ll be able to find loads of kid-friendly songs.
Help your baby clap her hands together along to music or in celebration. Your little one will love clapping along and may surprise you by clapping themselves.
Again, they enjoy the rhythm of rhyming and clapping so they’ll love this activity.
Stacking Cups or Blocks
Use soft blocks and practice stacking them together. Once you stack them up, let your little one knock the tower over.
This helps teach your little one cause and effect. Stacking also helps to develop fine motor skills as you carefully balance the blocks.
Rattles are great to use while listening to music or just playing together. Just make sure to find a soft and safe rattle because their movements may be a little out of control still.
You don’t want to get hit with a plastic rattle, trust me!
Babies love to put items into buckets or containers. Have your little one sit up and offer a lot of small toys. Let them place them into the bucket one at a time. Once they fill it up, they can dump it out and do it again.
This may seem simple to us, but this keeps babies entertained for ages. You’ll help them develop fine motor skills while they grab the toys and place them into the container.
Now that your baby can support their weight on their legs, it’s a fun time to introduce jumpers. These help your baby strengthen their leg muscles and play in an upright position.
We loved this jumper that has activities in every direction. Our little one was entertained for ages.
6 Month Old Baby Milestones
I hope you’re feeling more confident and have a better understanding of what a baby should be doing by 6 months.
Get ready for what’s ahead with 9-month old milestones and activities.
The first year of life goes so quickly as your baby is rapidly growing and developing. It’s so important as a parent to help guide your little one along the right path.
Becoming a parent is a really big adjustment and it’s hard for a lot of us. If you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed, you’re not alone. These tips might help you relax and feel a little better.
Parenting is an ongoing learning process with loads of ups and downs along the way. My goal is to provide you with some guidance to help ease this transition for you and make your job easier.