Mental Leap – What is?

What is a mental leap?

Why is my baby crying? This is one of the most frequently asked questions you may ask as a brand-new parent/caregiver. Our research on the leaps, which began in Tanzania in 1971, led us to discover that all babies from time to time cry more, and are more cranky and clingy than normal. Periods when babies can be inconsolable and when parents cannot figure out what is wrong. 

During our research, we found out that we can predict the beginning of these fussy phases with almost weekly accuracy based on the due date. We saw these fussy phases happen 10 times in a baby’s first 20 months of life. The 10 leaps of The Wonder Weeks! 

Did you know that all you have to do is fill in the due date in our app and you will automatically get a notification when the fussy phase of the leaps begins?

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Phases in a mental leap

1. The fussy phase

Thanks to the sudden change in the brain, the senses of hearing, touch, smell, taste, and sight are experiencing rapid growth. These changes in senses make it feel as if your baby is waking up in a completely new world. This can be terrifying for your baby and can make him/her very upset. 

There are three recurring signs you can recognize that the fussy phase of a leap has begun: crying, cranky and clingy. These signals can make it seem as if your baby is going backward in development, but in fact, they mean progress. Your baby is learning!

A new world full of new skills awaits your baby. And it is in this new, still strange, world that your baby needs you.

2. The skills phase

When your baby has gotten over the shock of this new world, he/she starts to explore it. Just like all the new skills that go with it. It’s your baby’s choice which skills to develop. What will your baby explore? Will it babble more? Will it discover the new capabilities of its little body? Or will he/she observe everything? 

Each leap in development brings a huge list of skills. In our app, you can not only check off more than 400 skills from all the leaps, but also keep track of them in your personal diary. So crying is not necessarily a cause for worry, it can also be a cause for celebration! 

Want to know which leap your baby is in? Then use our leap calculator.

What exactly is your baby going through?

The Wonder Weeks describes the ten leaps in mental development every baby goes through in its first twenty months of life. Our app explains how a baby’s view of the world changes with each leap and how he/she can use this insight to develop new skills.

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