After age one, children no longer need formula. They can drink cow’s milk. But make sure it’s whole milk, not low-fat or skim milk. Children need milk fat for growth and energy. Serve whole milk until your child is at least two years old.
If you are worried that your child has a milk allergy, talk to your doctor about other options to provide the calcium and other nutrients she needs. 

        At this age, children love to experiment. They will dip their fingers into apple juice and smear pudding on their tray. At the same time, they are learning to feed themselves. Milk will get spilled, and food will fall on the floor.
Accept your child’s efforts. Gently confine activities to the tray of the high chair. Drape a dishtowel under the child’s chin, or use a bib. Put newspaper or an old shower curtain on the floor. This will make cleanup easier.

 Other tips for mealtime

  • Wash your child’s hands before eating. In crawling and moving around, she picks up germs everywhere. Use soap and warm water and rub her hands together briskly.
  • Use dishes that will lessen frustration. Plastic dishes won’t break. Shallow bowls and cups with broad bases are less likely to spill. Plates with upturned rims will help keep food in place.
  • Serve small portions, just a spoonful or two. Your child wants to show her independence. Let her ask for more when she wants more.
  • Watch for signs of fullness. If your child is playing with her food and no longer eating it, it’s time to take it away.
  • Wash your child’s hands and face after eating. Change a messy shirt, if needed.

 Shy or anxious with strangers

  • Cries when mother or father leaves
  • Enjoys imitating people in his play
  • Shows specific preferences for certain people and toys
  • Tests parental responses to his actions during feedings. (What do you do when he refuses a food?)
  • Tests parental responses to his behavior. (What do you do if he cries after you leave the room?)
  • May be fearful in some situations
  • Prefers mother and/or regular caregiver over all others
  • Repeats sounds or gestures for attention
  • Finger-feeds himself/herself
  • Extends arm or leg to help when being dressed

 Movement

  • Reaches sitting position without assistance
  • Crawls forward on belly
  • Assumes hands-and-knees position
  • Creeps on hands and knees
  • Gets from sitting to crawling or prone (lying on stomach) position
  • Pulls self up to stand
  • Walks holding on to furniture
  • Stands momentarily without support
  • May walk two or three steps without support

 Language

  • Pays increasing attention to speech
  • Responds to simple verbal requests
  • Responds to “no”
  • Uses simple gestures, such as shaking head for “no”
  • Babbles with inflection
  • Says “dada” and “mama”
  • Uses exclamations, such as “Oh-oh!”
  • Tries to imitate words

 Cognitive

  • Explores objects in many different ways (shaking, banging, throwing, dropping)
  • Finds hidden objects easily
  • Looks at correct picture when the image is named
  • Imitates gestures
  • Begins to use objects correctly (drinking from cup, brushing hair, dialing phone, listening to receiver)

 Developmental Health Watch

Each baby develops in his own manner, so it’s impossible to tell exactly when your child will perfect a given skill. Although the developmental milestones will give you a general idea of the changes you can expect as your child gets older, don’t be alarmed if his development takes a slightly different course. Alert your pediatrician if your baby displays any of the following signs of possible developmental delay in the 8- to 12-month age range.

  • Does not crawl
  • Drags one side of body while crawling (for over one month)
  • Cannot stand when supported
  • Does not search for objects that are hidden while he watches
  • Says no single words (“mama” or “dada”)
  • Does not learn to use gestures, such as waving or shaking head
  • Does not point to objects or pictures

 It is important to remember that this information is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Diagnosis and treatment should be done only by your health care provider. For more information contact your local health department or physician.

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