In the first years of life, the baby milestone your little one will reach is the ability to sit. Watching your baby develop new skills and explore new things is pretty intriguing and exciting.
Sitting up gives kids a different perspective on their exploration journey. But this happens differently in every child, as each will have their own pace of upper body and core strength development.
When do babies sit up?
In the crossing of the baby milestone of sitting up, the stages they grow through are:
- By 2 months, your baby will pick their head up and try to look around at small intervals.
- By the age of 4 months, they start to have some control over their necks and can hold their heads up without assistance.
- By the time your baby reaches 6 months, they can sit up with your assistance.
You may wonder when your baby will show signs of being ready to sit up. You will notice signs such as when your little one is ready to sit; they are most likely to push themselves up when lying down and have mastered the ability to roll over.
However, the real question is when babies sit up. Well, in some cases, babies may start sitting by 4 to 6 months with some help and support, and by 9 months, they start sitting up independently.
How can you help?
As a new parent, it is normal to be excited about all the little milestones your baby crosses to grow up and become independent. Sitting up is one such baby milestone that parents want to see their babies cross.
Let's find out what little things and activities you can do to help your child develop these large motor skills and master this milestone to progress in their development.
What activities does my baby require to develop the necessary strength for sitting?
This development of sitting up is a gradual process and can happen at different growth rates in babies. Through this blog, we will help you with some activities that your baby might need to develop their large motor skills and sit up. It may vary according to your baby's age and physical requirements for development:
Baby Milestone: The First 3 Months of Development
This can also be called the first baby milestone your child will cross. During the first three months of development, your little one will develop their neck muscles, along with the ability to lift up the head and control its movement.
This will eventually be a necessary foundation for the development of sitting. Let's look through the following activities that will cater to large motor skill development:
- Tummy time reaching activities
Activities like tummy time are essential and are one of the foundations for developing the large motor skills needed for sitting.
The tummy-time reaching activities include rolling toys like the Montessori spinning drum, the bell cylinder rattle, and sensory balls. From the house of Nino Mondo, you can find the Pride and Joy Bundle, where you can find every toy necessary for tummy time.
These activities will encourage your baby to reach for objects and also encourage them to lift their head while reaching during tummy time, thus developing large motor skills in the upper body as well as the whole body to gather strength through reaching.
- Head-Lifting Activities with Tummy Time
Another critical aspect of the baby milestone is lifting their head. Tummy time, for example, can be done in various ways by introducing them to tummy-time mirrors and tactile or sensory mobiles.
Along with the Montessori mobile gym, you can encourage your 3-month-old baby to lift up their head and upper body while practicing these activities.
- Interactive activities or games
Some activities encourage the learn-by-play theme of Montessori. You can play with your infant during tummy time, enabling them to lift their head and upper body while you interact. Such games include peek-a-boo in the mirror or holding a picture book story during tummy time just high enough that your baby has to lift the head to see the pictures.
Next Baby Milestone: The 4-6 Months Stage of Development
From 4 to 6 months, your baby can hold their head up and reach with upper body control. During this time, your baby will begin developing the large motor skills that will help in the ability to sit, and there are some games and activities that can be played to help encourage this development:
- Knee Bouncing Games
With this game, you can support your baby in that sitting posture, place your baby on your knee while keeping them in that sitting position, then bounce your knee at different speeds while saying the name and making the noise of various types of transport or animals.
It is important not to do this for longer than a few minutes at a time with breaks so that it supports your baby's sitting development without causing any physical damage.
- Muscular massage
It is an excellent idea to include a massage into your baby's daily routine, and a good time for it is right after bath time or before bedtime when your baby is most relaxed. A simple baby oil is enough to use for the massage.
During the first three months, massage can be a good thing to add to your parenting guide, as, during this stage, your baby will get ready for movement, sitting, and crawling, aside from its other benefits.
What activities will encourage sitting after my baby develops the ability to sit independently?
Once your baby starts sitting, you can do activities to make their sitting muscles stronger. This helps them sit for longer and with better control. Some activities that help with this development include:
- Sensory Balls
With your baby learning to sit, try playing throw and catch with a soft sensory ball while they are sitting. This helps with overall body movement and strengthens their muscles for sitting. Doing this daily will help your baby sit longer without tipping over.
- Musical pillows
It's like musical chairs, but instead of chairs, use pillows. You and your little one can crawl around some pillows until the music stops. When it does, everyone tries to sit on a pillow. This game helps with large motor coordination and strengthens sitting muscles. Play this game with everyone and try involving other kids, family, or friends when they're around.
Help your child learn to sit by first building strength in the upper body, then the whole body. Engage them in games and activities that strengthen muscles as they start sitting.
This way, your child can sit down, stand up, and stay seated for as long as they want while controlling their upper body. This is the main aim of developing strength while your child is learning and practicing sitting.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. What is the best age for a baby to start sitting?
A. Babies usually start holding their heads steady around 4 months. By 6 months, they might sit with a little help. At 9 months, they can sit well on their own but might need assistance getting in and out of the position. Around 12 months, babies can sit without help.
Q. What helps babies learn to sit?
A. Babies learn to sit by practicing. Place them in a supported sitting position, use cushions for comfort, and engage in gentle play to strengthen their muscles. Gradually, they'll develop the ability to sit independently.
Q. What causes delays in babysitting?
A. If your baby is taking longer to learn big movements like rolling over, sitting, crawling, or walking, it might be a delay in motor skills. This can be normal, but it's good to check with a doctor to make sure everything is okay.