Welcome to your baby’s eleventh month. Your baby is just one step ahead of transforming into a toddler. It will be a fulfilling month for you to see your kid getting independent as well as progressing in terms of his overall development.
Although your baby’s vocabulary may only consist of babbling sounds and basic words, such as “dada” and “mama,” her verbal skills and ability to comprehend continue to develop rapidly. She may, for example, be able to imitate inflections, sounds of words and follow basic directions, such as, “Please bring over that toy,” according to BabyCenter.com. She may also be able to point at body parts when you name them.
Your 11-month-old is a moving machine. Although he may not walk for another few months, he should at least be able to roll around, crawl, scoot, pull himself up into standing position and walk while holding onto another person or a piece of furniture, according to Children, Youth and Women’s Health Service. He can also use small muscles to pick up objects with his thumb and fingers, point and poke with a finger and move objects between one hand and the other.
Your baby continues to grow at a rapid pace and will have just about doubled her height and tripled her weight by her first year, according to the Mayo Clinic. However, by his 11th month you may begin to notice that her growth has slowed down. This is especially true if she is active, because she burns off calories by moving around the house, according to the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture. Although she needs adequate nutrition to support her new active lifestyle, don’t be too concerned if she doesn’t finish all of her food and trust that she will eat when she’s hungry.
Your baby’s playtime interests will align with many of his developing motor skills. According to BabyCenter.com, your 11-month-old likely has an attention span that lasts between two and five minutes for quieter activities. However, his favorite activities– pushing, throwing and knocking down as many objects as he can—may be a little less than quiet. He may also like to give and take toys from others, bang items together to create satisfying noises and place items in containers to immediately dump them out.
Foster your baby’s development by interacting with her on a regular basis. BabyCenter.com recommends reading simple books with your baby, counting objects, such as socks and stairs, and pointing out colors and names of items. It also suggests encouraging give-and-take by offering her a chance to respond. For example, you may hold up two shirts and ask your 11-month-old whether she would like to wear her yellow shirt or her blue shirt. Children, Youth and Women’s Health Service recommends offering your baby pots and pans to bang on, singing songs and moving with your baby to a musical rhythm.
11 month old’s sleep
At this age, most 11 month olds can sleep through the night, without a feeding, and take two naps for a total of 2 to 2 1/2 hours per day plus 11-12 hours at night. A very small percentage transition to one nap as early as 10 months, but not many, so assume 2 naps unless you are certain. My eldest son did transition to one nap one week before his first birthday, so it was in the 11th month that I started seeing his morning nap get later and later. Most babies get very very overtired and sleep can spiral out of control, so I always recommend keeping two naps as long as possible. The average age to transition to one nap is 15-18 months. My younger son seemed to start to transition to one nap around the same time, but went back to two naps within a week or two and continued taking two naps until 15 or 16 months. It makes me think my older son would have gone back to two naps, too, had I given him more time to try. Learn from me. Your 11 month old should be taking 2-3 naps per day for a total of 2-3 hours per day plus 11-12 hours at night. If you’re having trouble with naps, you might be interested in helping your baby nap.
Although many babies can go all night without a single feeding, in my experience, some do better with one feeding after 4 or 5 a.m. and sleep longer than not feed and get an early wake-time. I would need to know your specific situation to make a recommendation, but just recognize that all babies are different. By this age I would not expect more than one feeding, typically, if any at all. I would recommend at least an attempt at night-weaning because it is a chicken and egg problem. It’s hard to encourage more eating during the day when he is eating at night and it’s hard to discourage eating at night when he isn’t eating more during the day.
All babies vary, but here are some rough schedules you can use to make your own for your unique baby. I should warn you that I am in the camp that breast milk or formula should be the primary nutrition for the first year and solids come secondary.
Snack Foods for an 11-Month-Old Baby
Allowing your 11-month-old baby to experiment with healthy snack foods not only fosters independence, but also offers him an extra boost of nutrition.
Fruits are not only packed with vitamins, minerals and fiber, but they are also low in fat and sodium. By this age, your baby has a few teeth and should be getting better at chewing and swallowing — but fruits that are tough to chew still remain a choking hazard. Choose soft fruits such as oranges, peaches, watermelon, kiwifruit, pineapple and bananas. Cut grapes and berries into smaller pieces. Harder fruits such as apples or pears can be diced and mashed for an easier-to-manage texture.
Rather than serving raw veggies, steam them until tender before serving them to your baby. Steaming allows you to maintain their high nutritional content while making them easier for your baby to chew. Carrots, peas, zucchini and mushrooms are good options. Your baby might also enjoy broccoli and cauliflower — just watch him closely the first few times you serve it, as these veggies tend to be a bit harder to chew. If you don’t have time to steam a few veggies, serve diced avocado or thin bell pepper strips — these foods have a naturally soft texture.
The BabyCenter website recommends not serving cows’ milk until after 12 months of age — so consult your baby’s physician before serving cheese or yogurt made from cow’s milk to your 11-month-old. Goat cheese and soy yogurt are good alternatives. Other protein-packed foods include boneless fish, finely diced meats, soft cooked beans and eggs. Eggs are extremely versatile — and you can sneak a number of other healthy foods into them. For example, try scrambling eggs with soft black beans, diced tomatoes, shredded zucchini and mushrooms. Serve a small amount of the egg scramble as a snack now and refrigerate the remainder for a later snack or tomorrow’s breakfast.
Grains serve as the foundation for many typical baby snack foods. Rather than just relying on the same iron-fortified cereal you’ve been feeding your baby for a few months, consider serving spiral whole wheat pasta or lightly toasted whole wheat bread wedges. Wheat crackers can also be a fun snack for your baby to gnaw on. Bite-sized wheat cereal pieces are another baby-friendly snack — just make sure it’s low in sugar.
The potential for allergies is always a concern when introducing new foods into your baby’s diet. Allowing at least three days before you introduce new foods can help you accurately assess any food allergies in your baby. Be particularly cautious about serving your baby foods that cause allergy symptoms in any immediate family members.