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September 06, 2022

Natural Gross Motor Development and Rolling

The last few weeks with Penelope have been what I can only describe as an explosion of movement around here. She has been able to roll and scoot for awhile, but something consciously clicked the past week where she seems to understand that movement means getting to where she wants to go. 

There are fewer and fewer times when I'm noticing that her feet are going up into the air automatically when she is placed down. And less rolling to her belly and getting stuck there. Instead, I'm observing her notice that a toy is off to one side and rolling that way to grab it. I'm observing more time on her stomach and side. And, I'm noticing some pivoting. 

So, I thought I would get out my favorite natural gross motor development resource - Unfolding of Infant's Natural Gross Motor Development by Emmi Pikler - and note what I'm seeing and what might be coming next!

Natural Gross Motor Development - More than Rolling

While I think in traditional parenting contexts we sometimes think only about major milestones like rolling, crawling, and walking there are so many amazing things that happen in between these big steps! Here are a few that Penelope has done this week: 

  • Side lying: back to side to back again
  • Side lying: belly to side to back
  • Side lying: belly to creep forward with leg up and back to back
  • Supine (laying on back): raising up on one elbow as turning
  • Prone (on belly): resting on one hand, one hand in motion
  • Prone: pushing up with raised chest with both hands
  • Prone: pivoting around a center point
  • All: bringing one or both knees to chest

What's Coming Up?

While I'm in no rush for Penelope to develop faster movement, I do know it's coming! Before we get to full blown transitional positions, I'm expecting a few things coming up, including:

  • Flying Baby: One of my favorite baby movements - raising both arms and both legs and flailing about as if swimming or flying. 
  • Side Lying Foot: Pulling one leg up so that the foot rests flat on the floor while side lying. 
  • Army Crawling: Pulling herself forward with her arms while legs follow behind

This post is week 29 of my Montessori baby series focusing on Penelope.


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