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Normal Development: 9 Months Old


Here's what you might see your baby doing between the ages of 9 and 12 months.

Daily Activities

  • Continues to enjoy banging and waving toys.
  • Throws and shakes objects.
  • Gets absorbed in toys and games.
  • Explores food with fingers.
  • Initiates play.

Motor Skills

  • Goes from sitting to lying position unassisted.
  • May pull self to standing position.
  • Stands holding on to furniture.
  • Tries to move one foot in front of the other when held upright.
  • May try to crawl up stairs.
  • May start to walk with help.

Language Development

  • Imitates the rising and falling sounds of adult conversation.
  • Imitates more speech sounds, but does not yet understand most of them.
  • Repeats sounds again and again.
  • May start to say "mama" or "dada".

Emotional and Behavioral Development

  • Resists doing what he does not want to do.
  • May imitate parent behaviors such as cooking or cleaning.
  • Loves showing off for family audience.
  • May cry when parent leaves the room.
  • May resist diapering.

Each child is unique. It is difficult to describe exactly what should be expected at each stage of a child's development. While certain behaviors and physical milestones tend to occur at certain ages, a wide range of growth and behavior for each age is normal. These guidelines show general progress through the developmental stages rather than fixed requirements for normal development at specific ages. It is perfectly natural for a child to reach some milestones earlier and other milestones later than the general trend.

If you have any concerns about your child's own pattern of development, check with your healthcare provider.


Written by Donna Warner Manczak, PhD, MPH and Robert Brayden, MD.
Published by RelayHealth.
Last modified: 2009-10-29
Last reviewed: 2009-09-21

This content is reviewed periodically and is subject to change as new health information becomes available. The information is intended to inform and educate and is not a replacement for medical evaluation, advice, diagnosis or treatment by a health care professional.

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