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Infant - Week #32

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A 32-Week-Old At A Glance

By Amy Salatino, edHelperBaby

  Don't Be Manipulated!
           It's pretty hard to look at the cute little baby and not get that soft and mushy feeling.  But be strong. That cute little smiley, drooly kid knows he's cute, and he knows exactly how to push your buttons even at such a young age.  He's already good and getting better; be aware of how you respond to his behaviors.  You don't want to buy into, or worse, encourage these manipulations.  If you leave a room and he starts crying, don't come running back or you are reinforcing these behaviors.  Let him learn that he might not always run the show, even if he is REALLY cute!


  Consistency Is Key!
           Your baby is at the stage in development where he is learning from behaviors.  He is learning that all actions have reactions and consequences.  Help him be successful by being nothing but consistent.  The more consistent you are the less confusion he will feel.  If you say no to hair pulling once, say no every time. Don't laugh at him if someone else is around or he will get mixed messages.  Same goes for nighttime routines and other such instances...be consistent; it's good for everyone!


  Doubling Up!
           Your baby's physical development is emerging right along with his social and cognitive development.  You'll notice now that instead of only grasping items in one hand at a time, he is able to use both hands at once.   Nurture this development by placing multiple objects in front of him and stimulating him with appealing toys.


  Can You Grasp It?
           Not only is your baby capable of holding items in both hands but he is developing different grasps and different ways to hold different things.  He will hold a long item like a rattle differently than he'll hold a flat item like a piece of paper or a plastic plate.  In addition to flat and long, he is also developing his pinscher grasp which he uses to pick up small items, like Cheerios.  Encourage all of these grasps by saturating him with different kinds of items!


  Do Try This At Home - Gestures
           How did it happen so fast?  You brought home a tiny infant who, other than crying, had no means of communication, and you blink twice and you have a baby who is ready to start communicating with the world around him.  Your baby is capable of mimicking your sounds AND your actions.  Now's the time to start encouraging your baby to gesture and mimic actions.  Start with the basics like bye-bye, so big, all done, and uppie.  When your little one gets these, add some more into the collection.


Gesturing With Max
           I'll admit it; we tried sign language and weren't all that successful, but I am going to have to blame my own lack of consistency for that one.  I was more excited to start these gesturing games because they are more fun and simply more natural for me to do.  Uppie and bye-bye are things that we have been saying and encouraging for the last few weeks.  Max doesn't so much imitate yet, but he does smile and giggle and enjoy the interactions.  Not only am I more consistent in doing them but my gesture is ALWAYS the same as well.  There is no doubt in my mind that if I continue to work on these gestures with Max I will be more successful than I was with sign language.       

       In addition to uppie and bye-bye, we also play the so big game and encourage Max to put both of his arms up in the air.  We say so big in loud, boisterous voices and physically put his arms straight up over his head!  He absolutely chortles and falls to pieces giggling when we do this, and that makes it so much more fun.  Encouraging mimicking of these gestures is an important developmental activitiy that the whole family can and should be a part of!  Don't expect overnight results, but you will definitely see them in the weeks or months to follow.  Do try this at home!


  That's Questionable
           Q - Have you lowered the crib mattress yet?       

       In this case, I don't know how to answer the question.  I can say yes (it is low) and it's kind of a lie, and I can say no (I haven't changed it recently) and it's kind of a lie.       

       I haven't changed the height of the crib mattress in four years.  It is on the second to lowest setting and will probably stay there until we dismantle the crib in about a year.  We did have it raised up higher when my oldest was an infant and moved it down when she was about seven months.  We moved it to the second bottom level because I am short, and I really struggled to reach her when it was all the way down.       

       Our babies are at the age where if your crib mattress isn't at one of the lower settings it should be.  As they develop those gross motor skills and their muscles get stronger they will start pulling themselves up, and lowering the crib mattress could avert tragedy.  My children tend to be on the short side, and I am pretty comfortable with it being at the level it is at until Max is big enough for a bed.


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