A Family Approach to Photos
Your Photo Albums:

Edit Albums
Upload New Pictures
Infant - Week #49

Get Weekly Updates on your Child E-Mailed to You
Complete Privacy - Your information will be used by edHelperBaby only and will never be shared with another company.

  Enter your E-MAIL ADDRESS:  

Week 49: Walk This Way!

By Meg Leonard, edHelperBaby

           Your 49-week-old baby is showing her independence in many ways as she approaches her first birthday. She is moving very quickly and will surprise you with the speed at which she can cross a room. She is probably cruising the furniture (walking along it and holding on to the edge) and may have taken some independent steps towards something or someone interesting. Her personality is shining through. For the outgoing baby, you can easily read her emotions from the look on her face. The shy child may be a little harder to read, but those close to her can tell what mood she is in. Every day brings new surprises and challenges for your 49-week-old!


Encouraging Those First Steps
           For most of us, walking is a skill that we don't remember learning. Since we don't remember the actual process by which we learned to walk, it may be challenging to help our babies learn the very intricate skill of walking. There are many forces at work when your baby is taking those timid first steps - gravity, balance, momentum. Provide a safe, encouraging environment in which to teach your baby how to walk.

       If your baby is not ready to take his first steps at 49 weeks, don't despair. Although most babies take their first steps between 9 and 12 months, some babies don't take their first steps until 16 or 17 months. For your own peace of mind, discuss any concerns that you have regarding your baby with his doctor.


           Encourage your baby to make progress in whatever stage of walking he is in.
  • If he is crawling but not standing, take his hands and gently pull him to a standing position. Don't be surprised if he resists this at first. This is a strange position for him and it might take a few tries for him to feel comfortable with the idea of standing.
  • If your baby is standing, help him to stand along furniture and take a few steps with the help of the furniture for balance.
  • If your baby is cruising the furniture, encourage him to take steps away from the furniture. Sit on the floor a few feet away from where he is standing. Hold out your hands, put a big smile on your face, and call your baby's name. You may want to reach out a hand to further encourage him to take those first steps away from the security of the sturdy furniture. You can also give your outstretched fingers to your baby and help him to walk along with you as you walk at a slow pace.
  • If your baby is walking independently, give him many opportunities to practice his new skill. Instead of carrying him to his high chair at mealtime, let him walk over at his own pace. Let him walk whenever it is practical in your home. If the weather permits, allow him to walk outside in the grass or along a safe paved surface.


Exploring Motion
    Book: My Very First Book of Motion by Eric Carle
       This unique board book introduces action words (verbs) to your baby. While most board books focus on the names of objects (nouns), this book pairs a drawing of an animal with its name and then asks the reader to find the appropriate action for the animal. The book is structured so that the name and illustration are located on the top half of each page. The page is literally split in two pieces, with the action word on the bottom half. The artwork is in the style of Carle's other classic books, such as The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?. This book provides a clever way to introduce your baby to the world of action words!


Real Life with Baby
           Mary has been actively cruising the furniture for about two weeks. She is reluctant to take independent steps, however, unless there is a really good incentive just out of her reach. I know that she has the muscle strength to walk for a few paces. She needs practice with her balance and coordination.

       Our activity this week was to see if I could get her to take a few steps away from the comfort of the furniture. For our first attempt, I decided to try while Mary was cruising the furniture in our living room. While sitting about five feet away from the couch, I held out my hands and beckoned Mary to walk towards me. She smiled at me, removed one hand from the couch, and eventually took a few steps towards me. Once she reached the safety of my arms, she promptly went down to her knees. I tried to encourage her to try again, but she just snuggled into me.

       We continued to practice this all week, but haven't gotten more than four independent steps at any one time. I do see that she is developing more confidence as she walks and will let go of the safety of the wall or furniture more easily now than at the beginning of the week.

       I wasn't sure how Mary would react to My Very First Book of Motion. As much as I liked the book, I wasn't sure it would hold her attention. We read it together before her afternoon nap one day, and she really seemed taken with the book. Lately, when we read a book that she enjoys, Mary indicates through pointing and "uh's" that she wants me to read it again. She will also throw a book to the ground if she decides that she doesn't want to listen to the story. This book stayed on my lap and she indicated that she wanted me to read it again. I think she liked the contrast of the colored illustrations with the white page and black words. She seemed intrigued by the split page, too. It is hard to grasp the concept of a verb from a still picture, but we talked about how the beetle "flips" in the illustration. I think the book was a hit with Mary!


Recording Those Precious First Steps
           Be sure to have fresh batteries in the digital camera or video camera while your baby is practicing taking his first steps. You can download your digital pictures to edHelperBaby and record the story of your baby's first steps on the journaling feature of the site. Remember that you can share your photos and journal with friends and family. You simply need to provide them with the email address that you used to register with the site and then they can access your journal and any photos that you have downloaded.


The Occasional Misstep
           Unfortunately, learning to walk isn't without its share of dangers. There are corners to walk into, objects to trip over, and places where you can lose your footing. Be sure to have a first aid kit on hand and an ice pack for those bumps on the head. Keep a close eye on your baby and continue to adjust the precautions you have taken for childproofing. As your baby becomes even more mobile, he will have the ability to find new dangers. Now that he can walk, he may have discovered the previously un-noticed trash can or stairs. In other words, things that were never a problem before will now become enticing objects for your baby. Watch for these new temptations and make modifications to keep your baby safe.


Ask Your Own Question

Ask a Question

Give a Suggestion     Contact edHelperBaby
Note: All information on edHelperBaby is of a general nature for educational purposes only.
For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
Your use of this site indicates your agreement to be bound by the Terms of Use.