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Coming & going: ready to roll around

This developmental milestone is the beginning of the mobility process

Raising their arms to be lifted from the crib and onto someone’s lap is just one of the many motor skills five-month-old babies possess. They can also lay on their tummies, using their strength to raise their hands and keep their heads up. And, very soon, they’ll kick start the fun rolling movement, an important phase in the path to mobility.

Truthfully, it all begins with turning around, a fundamental part of development: laying on their back, the child turns over to lay on their stomach, and vice-versa.

You can incentivize your child in the following ways:

  • Placing toys nearby and helping the child stretch and support their arm to grab it, thus, helping them roll over.
  • If they roll over accidentally, shake a rattle in the direction in which they rolled to see if they’ll repeat the trick.
  • Use a towel or bed sheet to help: place the baby on top of the fabric, lift one end and then the other, moving it slowly.
  • Don’t forget to clap to cheer them on – during this phase, the child learns to clap their hands – and to congratulate them on the feat.
  • Some babies can get scared and cry if they roll over suddenly. Smile and assure them everything is ok, so the child can feel safe and calm down.