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Developmental milestones record - 12 months


The typical 12-month-old child will demonstrate certain physical and mental skills. These skills are called developmental milestones.

Alternative Names

Normal childhood growth milestones - 12 months; Growth milestones for children - 12 months; Childhood growth milestones - 12 months


All children develop a little differently. If you are concerned about your child's development, talk to your child's health care provider.


A 12-month-old child is expected to:

  • Be 3 times their birth weight
  • Grow to a height of 50% over birth length
  • Have a head circumference equal to that of their chest
  • Have 1 to 8 teeth
  • Stand without holding on to anything
  • Walk alone or when holding 1 hand
  • Sit down without help
  • Bang 2 blocks together
  • Turn through the pages of a book by flipping many pages at a time
  • Pick up a small object using the tip of their thumb and index finger
  • Sleep 8 to 10 hours a night and take 1 to 2 naps during the day


The typical 12-month-old:

  • Begins pretend play (such as pretending to drink from a cup)
  • Follows a fast moving object
  • Responds to their name
  • Can say momma, papa, and at least 1 or 2 other words
  • Understands simple commands
  • Tries to imitate animal sounds
  • Connects names with objects
  • Understands that objects continue to exist, even when they can't be seen
  • Participates in getting dressed (raises arms)
  • Plays simple back and forth games (ball game)
  • Points to objects with the index finger
  • Waves bye
  • May develop attachment to a toy or object
  • Experiences separation anxiety and may cling to parents
  • May make brief journeys away from parents to explore in familiar settings


You can help your 12-month-old develop skills through play:

  • Provide picture books.
  • Provide different stimuli, such as going to the mall or zoo.
  • Play ball.
  • Build vocabulary by reading and naming people and objects in the environment.
  • Teach hot and cold through play.
  • Provide large toys that can be pushed to encourage walking.
  • Sing songs.
  • Have a play date with a child of a similar age.
  • Avoid television and other screen time until age 2.
  • Try using a transitional object to help with separation anxiety.


Feigelman S. The first year. In: Kliegman RM, Behrman RE, Jenson HB, Stanton BF, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 19th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2011:chap 8.