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Bonding, Babies 6-18 Months

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To do list from the book Bright from the Start, Jill Stamm, Gotham Books

  • Delibarately hold the baby often vs. having infant in an infant carrier seats. Kiss, hug and hold baby routinely throughout the day.

  • Encourage skin-to-skin contact. Massage baby on a regular, daily basis (e.g., bath time, bedtime, etc.).

  • At the beginning of the stage (6 to 9 months), hold baby during feeding vs. propping a bottle.

  • Respond quickly and predictably to baby’s cries (i.e., come routinely within a few minutes and begin comforting crying baby verbally in a reassuring tone on the way to picking him up).

  • Try to interpret the meaning of various types of cries (e.g. hunger, change of diaper, tired, boredom/need of stimulation).

  • Develope predictable routines for bedtime, mealtime, getting dressed in the morning, etc. so that the baby can aticipate what happens when and knows what to expect.

  • Introduce baby to a variety of new “feels”(i.g., hunger, change of diaper, tired, boredom/need for stimulation)

  • Establish consistent routines for feeding, bathing and sleeping.

  • Provide a variety of objects to feel and explore with hands, mouth, and feet while verbally labeling for baby.

  • Slow activity level down periodically - less rushing, calmer atmosfere.

  • Respond predictably when faced with recurring action by baby.

  • Develope physical cues (e.g., bringing baby’s arms in close to baby’s body as in cocooning) that can signal the baby and help to calm him/her.

  • Label feelings, emotions and experiences as baby’s behaviours change (e.g.,”Are you feeling tired and sleepy now?” “You sem so proud of yourself.”That is hard to do; It’s OK to feel frustrated.”)

  • Deliberately act positively with the baby showing both love and concern (e.g., smile, hug, make direct eye contact, praise, and show pleasure and thankfulness).

  • Deliberately look for child care that ensure low child/caregiver rations of; one caregiver to no more than three infants (and total maximum group size limited to nine); one caregiver to five or fewer toddlers.