Learning About Your Child

By: Aspen Swafford


Newborn babies look much different than expected. A newborn's eyelids are temporarily puffy or swollen. Their legs and feet might look bowed or bent because of the cramped space in the uterus. The curves will eventually straighten on their own as your baby grows and starts moving. They will have a misshapen head from the delivery, and then they will have a more round head within a few days. You'll notice two soft areas at the top of your baby's head where the skull bones haven't yet grown together. These spots are called fontanels. You might notice these spots pulsating when your baby cries or strains.

Bonding with your infant

Feeding time: bottle, breast

Touch: skin to skin contact, holding, cradling

Soothing sounds: nature sounds, static, radio, tv, vacuum

Massage: rub the baby's stomach, arms, legs, and feet to relax them/ calm them down

Daily routines: reading, talking

Daily care: bath time/ bed time

Changing: clothes, blankets, diapers

Appropriate toys for an infant

An appropriate toy for an infant has to be produced with durable materials so that the toy won't break. Rounded edgesare needed so the toy won't hurt them. It needs to be painted with durable, non-toxic substances for your baby's health. It needs to be colorful and Agee appropriate. It has to have tightly constructed parts and cords less than 12 inches long to avoid choking.

Examples: rattles, toy mirrors, teething ring, stacking toys, blocks, pounding toys

Pros & Cons of breast feeding and bottle feeding

Bottle feeding

Pros: shorter feeding time, convenient, less messy, hand control, pre-made bottles, anyone can feed baby.

Cons: less nutrients, may contain extra chemicals, lots of bottle equipment, washing bottles, expensive, no natural immunities.

Breast feeding

Pros: baby receives more nutrients, no bottle equipment, all natural, cheaper, Emotional bond, natural immunity, sanitary.

Cons: breasts get sore, time consuming, socially uncomfortable, painful, messy, sibling jealousy.

First foods for baby and when they should be introduced

At birth: milk through breast feeding/formula

2-4 weeks: orange juice, vitamin C supplements

4 weeks: fluoridated water

3 months: cereals that provide iron and taste differences, watery rice cereal

3-4 months: mashed/grated hard cooked egg yolk- protein & iron

4 months: puréed fruits and vegetables

6 months: puréed meats

7 months: breads and pastas

Later (with teeth): strained and chopped adult food

Characteristics of a healthy child

-sleeps soundly

-smiles a lot

-is very active/ moves a lot

-they are in the right stage of development for their age

-bright eyes

-no weird behaviors

-has an eating schedule

SIDS prevention

SIDS- the sudden, unexplained death of an infant younger than the age of one.


  • Use a firm sleeping surface with fitted sheets
  • Make sure nothing covers the baby's head
  • Don't use pillows, blankets, sheepskins
  • Dress baby in a one piece pajama out
  • Keep soft objects, toys, and loose bedding out
  • No smoking around baby
  • Shouldn't sleep in adult bed, couch, or chair alone

Crib safety

  • Place baby to sleep on back: never on top of blankets, pillows
  • No missing screws on bed: only repair with manufactur items, all parts are secure, firm mattress with no gaps
  • Keep cords out of reach