Meet George. Forever a baby.
If you trawl the web trying to understand your baby’s motor milestones, it’s a bit of a minefield. List after list of what your baby should be doing by age-month and, more often than not, information overload.
Motor development is not a checklist, it’s a continuum. Each passing phase is influenced by what happens before, and also influences what comes after. There is always a next.
So what if we turned the checklist phenomenon on it’s head, and instead asked what can your baby do? The beauty of this question is that to answer it, you have to stop and observe your baby moving. Rather than staying with the intellectual exercise of checklist checking, you get down on the floor with your baby and explore what they can actually do.
When you observe your baby moving, it helps if you know what you’re looking for. This is where George comes in. He allows new parents to compare their baby’s movements with early motor skills that most babies develop over the first year of life. Because sometimes, as a parent, you're not really sure what's coming next.
George was developed by paediatric physiotherapist Dr Suzanne Long and Andy Yong of 10Tickles Animation & Design. Ironically, George's gestation and ‘birth’ parallel that of Suzanne's real pregnancies in terms of duration (about nine months), frequency (about a two year gap), and general state (highs and lows). However, as the backbone of the web app at baby.physio, George will never grow up.
In truth, there are actually three George’s that approximate the changing size and shape of an average baby across the first year of life. This is because George exists as a continuum. That means - when using the web app - if particular skills George is doing are too easy for your baby, he’ll show you some trickier movements. And if they're too hard, no sweat, he’ll guide you to some easier ones. In this way, he takes the focus off achieving a skill at a specific age and asks you to check-in with where your baby is at.
Because movement matters.