9 - 10 Months

Why you can actually have too many blocks

Blocks are a classic for a reason. They help your baby develop gross and fine motor skills and learn about balance, cause and effect, gravity, and geometry.

Yet at this age, child development professionals recommend only giving your baby 3 to 4 blocks to play with at a time, to prevent them from being overwhelmed and losing interest. Your baby will enjoy that big block set when they’re older.

Here’s how babies play with blocks:

Picking up a block

In photo: The Block Set

Banging blocks together

Between 8 ½ and 12 months, your baby may start to use both of their hands to bang the blocks together. You can help them get there by putting your hands over your baby’s while they hold the blocks. Bang the blocks together hand-over-hand, then see if your baby imitates you on their own. Try banging in a rhythm; eventually they will copy you.

Play “Boom!”

Even though they probably can’t build a tower on their own yet, they will love to knock down a small one you build for them.

Putting blocks in containers

Your baby will love to put blocks into a container starting around 10 to 11 months. Before they learn to put the blocks in, though, they will want to dump them out, so you can put them in the container for your baby at first.

Stacking 2 blocks without balancing

By around 11 to 12 months, your baby may be able to put one block on top of the other without necessarily balancing them. See if your baby is ready to try this on their own by showing them how you put one block on top of the other.

Attempt to resist the temptation to “fix” your baby’s stack of blocks, so they can learn which positions support the blocks and which will not.

Stacking and balancing two or more blocks

Toddler sitting on the ground stacking four blocks
In photo: The Block Set

Around 12 to 16 months, your toddler will likely start building a tower with two blocks. When they’re between 16 and 18 months, they may start building a tower with 3 blocks, and between 18 and 22 months, they will likely be ready for 4-block towers.


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Posted in: 9 - 10 Months, Cause and Effect, Problem Solving, Fine Motor, Stacking, Math, Blocks, Child Development

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