What does a newborn see the moment it leaves the dark shelter of the womb and comes into our colourful, vibrant world? Not much, unfortunately, because even the development of vision is gradual. Nevertheless, it is with their eyes that toddlers begin to explore the world - even before they learn to rake, crawl or sit up, they are using their eyesight to gather important information that stimulates their overall development.
In the first year of life, babies learn to focus their gaze and use their eyes with precision and control. They also have yet to develop the ability to understand the information they receive in their brains with their eyes. As toddlers progress from day to day, here are some of the key milestones in the development of their vision.
From birth to 4 months
Babies can see from birth, but their vision is still very blurry at that time. In the first three months, they see best at a distance of 20-40 cm - which is usually the distance the baby is from their mother's face when breastfeeding or feeding.
Newborn babies see for the first 6 weeks only in black and white, with shades of grey. Black and white objects and toys such as Paulina the cow can be particularly beneficial for the development of a baby's vision, as they are easier to focus on and thus strengthen vision, memory, imagination and concentration. The earlier babies notice shapes in their surroundings, the more they develop both their thinking and motor skills. The contrast of the spots on Paulina the cow works in the same way - it's one of the first things they recognise, and they love it quickly.
In the first two months, a baby's eyes are not yet well coordinated, so sometimes his eyes seem to dance or cross.
At around 3 months, the baby's eyes start to track objects and reach for them. This is how he learns to coordinate his eyes with his hands. Sight stimulation is also a good way to prolong the tummy pose with your baby, as it allows him to concentrate longer and be more relaxed when looking.
From 5 to 8 months
Controlled eye movement and eye-body coordination are still advancing during this period. This is when the baby learns to use both eyes at the same time and gains a three-dimensional view of the world and depth of perspective.
At around 5 months, the baby should have developed quite fine colour vision.
From 9 to 12 months
During this period, the baby starts to grasp objects with the thumb and forefinger. By this age, most of them are crawling or walking, which also helps them to judge distances and throw things with greater accuracy.
From 1 to 2 years
Usually by the age of 2, children have well-developed eye-hand coordination and good depth perception.
Children in this period are extremely curious about their surroundings, observing and listening. They recognise familiar objects, pictures and books and start to doodle, for example, creating their own pictures and images.
Paulina the cow appeals to even the youngest with her contrasting patches of black and white fur! She is also extremely soft, so she is ideal for squeezing and cuddling. The Minimellows comforter is designed and handmade in Slovenia.