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12 Month Old Baby Milestones & Development

12 Month Old Baby Facts

For most of the first year of life, you’ll notice that you’re the one transporting your baby here, there, and everywhere.

Their little back, shoulder, and leg muscles aren’t fully developed for a long time. During that time, it’s you that must get them from place to place. You’re taking your baby shopping and have learned how to bring your baby in large crowds. While it may be tiring at times, taking your baby out in public is very important for all 12-month-olds.

By the 12th month of life, a whirlwind of muscle development occurs, paving the way for a potentially mobile baby. They may even be climbing/scaling objects by 11 months. Just imagine what the 12th month has in store for you!

Some of the most exciting milestones of your baby’s life will occur in month 12. Although there are babies who take steps or crawl earlier than 12 months, it’s at this age that all things become possible. Your baby may even start taking those adorable first steps.

The Major Milestones:

  • Crawling proficiency
  • Rolling over in both directions
  • Lifting head up
  • Working on foods they like
  • Playing with toys, stacking, organizing

By the time the real 12-month-old baby milestones roll around, your baby already has a very active life. They’re likely babbling their hearts out by now. If your baby isn’t babbling, please consult your pediatirican.

It is likely your one-year-old baby is staring at you, interacting with you, and mimicking you. They develop their own dislikes and likes of toys, food, and even people.

That’s not all there is, though! By 12 months of age, ther are many 12-month-old baby milestones to be on the lookout for.

1. First steps

There are definitely babies who take first steps before a year of age, but it’s not entirely common.

As a 12 month old baby milestones moment, taking the first steps will rank among the highest on the list of parents. It’s the one you’re waiting on.

You may stand above them, gently holding their hands and encouraging those muscles to develop. By 12 months of age, it’s likely that your baby may take a step or two in a general direction. Sometimes they’ll walk toward something they see.

Your baby loves you, so here’s a tip: you can serve as that beloved object in front of them to get them to go from cruising to stepping.

2. Response to language increase

Before 12 months of age, your child may seem like they’re in a world of their own. They may have previously ignored the many verbal cues all around them.

Well, you’re not miscalculating that. Babies don’t respond to language very much before a year old. A huge 12-month-old baby milestone is that he/she will now obey simple commands such as “drop” or “stop.”

It’s a true breakthrough! As a parent, you need to be able to communicate with your baby and let them know what’s safe or what isn’t. Being able to tell them “no” and have them respond is a wonderful feeling. It’s also one that keeps them safe.

3. Word imitation and small words

Your baby can usually pronounce at least one word by the time more 12-month-old baby milestones roll around. They may call you “ma-ma” or “da-da” or they may exclaim random words like, “uh oh!”

Everything gets really fun around this time. You can work with them on words that you want them to be able to say.

Sitting down with your child for a fun “word mimic” session will probably become a regular thing for you two as more 12-month-old baby milestones emerge.

You’ll notice that they make a visible effort to mimic the words you’re saying.

Working with them on these fun things increases your bonding time and increases their language skills. If your baby isn’t bonding with Dad, try allowing him to take the lead.

4. Crying when you leave

This next 12-month-old milestone can be a bit heartbreaking for parents: Your baby’s separation anxiety begins. This is a sign that your baby loves you, misses you, and that they’ve mastered the concept of object permanence (meaning they know you’re still there when you’re not there).

Parents will definitely want to work with their children on this count, as it can be very disturbing to parents and baby alike. Rest assured, however, that your baby is realizing that every time you leave, you also come back.

For now, just weather the storm and know that it’s a terrific sign your baby loves you and that bonding has occurred normally.

5. Toy Time Fun

Before 12 months of age, toys may have been interesting to your baby, but now they’ve become irresistible. Your 12-month-old baby has learned to interact with their toys in a more experimental way.

They bang them together, throw them, stack them, and try new things with them on a daily basis. Typically, they have a terrific time doing it. Your baby will need a healthy collection of toys at this point.

Thankfully, you’ll be able to find good discounts on baby toys throughout the years, and of course, if you run low on things that are stimulating their young minds, you can always find used toys.

First Birthday

Your child’s first birthday will likely consume a large part of your time and may take months of planning. There will probably be a guest list a mile long to come see what kind of person your baby is after the first 11 months has passed.

You’ll likely have a theme for the party, a guest list, and plenty of terrific finger foods that your 12-month-old can appreciate more than ever before. They’ll likely have a long list of favorite foods, and an even longer list of foods that they don’t like at all and will scowl at.

Pictures of a first-party will warm hearts for the rest of your lives.

So Many More Milestones

By this time, your 12-month-old appreciates music and small doses of television. There are hundreds of other little changes going on in the life of your 12-month-old baby.

You’ll witness so many different things, perhaps even the dreaded 12-month sleep regression. If your little one isn’t sleeping, please ensure you are using the best sleep schedule for a 12-month-old.


An interest in storytime is an important 12-month-old baby milestone. Why? Well, this is an excellent time for language and comprehension development. It’s the perfect time for reading to your little one.

Since their comprehension is getting better than ever, it’s likely they may even recognize some of the words. They won’t be picking up a book any time soon to read it to themselves or you, but they can appreciate words now. A 12-month-old may even know what some of the words mean!

New emotions will arise, such as separation anxiety and fear. That’s right, your baby may become uncomfortable around strangers at this point, too.


The world of a one year old is beyond fascinating to parents, friends of the family, and even other babies. Your child will inevitably have other companions their own age by this time, and you’ll notice that they have a little world all unto themselves that warms the heart of everyone around them, most of all themselves.

They’re full of laughter, fun, and games… as well as some crying spells to test your patience.

It’s all part of the fascinating world of raising a baby. You’ll have moments where you laugh, others where you want to cry, but all of it plays a part in your 12-month-old baby’s development and milestones. As your little one continues to develop physically and mentally, you’ll be the proud recipient of all the lessons learned.

Their life will be intertwined with yours. While they will learn from you, you’ll also learn from them. What’s mundane to us by now is a miraculous accomplishment for them. Even the idea of stacking blocks or banging them together takes a great deal of effort for them to accomplish. Cheer them on every step of the way forward!

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