Your baby is becoming much more socially adept by now, and takes a great deal of pleasure in meeting and being with other people. His interactions with you are increasingly comprehensive as he learns to understand certain words and phrases, and uses the communication skills he has learned to mix with others in the world around him.
Touching, smiling, and all the contact of general company are vital to your baby’s happiness at this stage, as he gradually learns to refine his conversational gestures and cries into recognizable signs of communication.
6-8 months Closeness to another baby will be a delight. He’ll reach out and touch new friends and will enjoy social games like “Peek- a- boo” and “Pat- a- Cake.” He will try to communicate with a series of shrieks, grunts, burbles, and coughs, and will mimic facial expressions and conversational gestures. You should “answer” him in order to stimulate these “conversations” and impress upon him that social interaction is a two-way activity.
8-12 months He will respond to his own name now and will understand that a firm “no” means that he should stop whatever he is doing. He is affectionate and will demand closeness with you, particularly big hugs and intimate smiles. Certain social rituals are common to him now- like saying “bye- bye”- which he’ll imitate with little prompting. He’ll no longer calmly allow a toy to be taken away; he’ll show anger if this happens.
12-15 months His sociability is constantly expanding, and he enjoys being in groups, especially when he can follow conversations and join in whenever there’s a lull. Despite his outgoing attitude, he will still need to be close to you for reassurance and security, and will often look to you when meeting new people- just holding hands will give him the confidence he needs. He can say a few words, ask for things, and show thanks when things are done for him in an individual way. He likes to be helpful, and enjoys sharing tasks with you.
15-18 months By now your baby is even more helpful with daily chores, and loves the independence of dressing and understanding himself. He is very affectionate, and shows love for his family, pets, and favorite toys. He imitates adult behavior and is fascinated by adult interaction and conversation. Despite being socially aware, he will tend to play alone and, although he will enjoy playing near another child, he will not tend to play with him.