It seems that parents start worrying about their kids being super geniuses earlier and earlier. Programs for teaching your baby to read, your preschooler how to work complicated math in their heads, and your kindergardener how to engineer the world’s next tallest building are marketed to parents all the time as though their child’s future happiness depends on having some kind of early academic advantage over all the other kids.
But it turns out they usually are born with just the right amount of smarts to have their needs met, grow well, and find all the happiness they could ask for at that moment. It’s just that us adults sometimes don’t realize how incredibly smart our tiny bundles really are.
10 signs that your newborn is already super smart
1. She wants to ditch the pretty crib with the adorable bedding set and prefers to sleep as close to you as possible. On your chest, snuggled by your side, in a carrier, where ever as long as she’s touching you. Food, warmth, help regulating her breathing and heart rate, and you’re right there to snatch her to safety should a lion show up looking for a tasty baby snack. Hey, you never know!
2. Pooping just as soon as you changed him and put him to the breast- gotta make room!
3. Her answer to every possible distress (including her own sneeze) is to breastfeed… again. Just making sure you’re going to have all the milk she needs!
4. Screams bloody murder if you try to put clothes on him but is most content in nothing but a diaper cuddled up to your bare chest. Skin to skin contact promotes maternal-infant interactions, encourages the breastfeeding relationship, improved bonding, maintaining body temperature, keeps him calm, breathing more naturally, allows mom (or other care taker) to respond faster to early cues of distress or hunger, boosts immune system development, and is just plain nice, way better than even the softest pajamas. You can read more about how this all works here.
5. Aims to get poop on her outfit at least once a day, more often 5. She knows you have too many newborn outfits, she’ll never get to wear them all if she doesn’t have multiple outfit changes a day!
6. You feel stressed about something and he suddenly needs to eat, timing couldn’t be worse! But that glorious release of oxytocin means you relax while he’s feeding and though you get a bit drowsy, you’re able to think more clearly and focus on what’s really important.
7. She’ll let you set her down or permit someone else to hold her just long enough for you to pee and if you’re lucky, maybe get a shower. Anything longer is unacceptable though, everything in her says to stay close to your smell, your breasts, you. Good thing too, she spent most of her life inside you so far and she knows you as safe which helps her identify her food source and keeps her bonded to you. Her life depends on it.
8. Cluster feeding: feed, doze, feed, doze, poop, feed, poop, feed, doze, feed doze… repeat. You may think you have more to do such as house cleaning, keeping up with an older child, work, shower, or change out of your pajamas but when cluster feeding hits it means some serious growing time ahead and your baby doesn’t have anything more important to do. Make a safe area for your older child and let your baby get his work done.
9. Car seat = torture device. Or best friend. Either she hates not being with you or she loves the motion. Whatever it is, she’d rather be snuggled against your chest, best to just stay home and take your time recovering from giving birth anyway.
10. He can’t fall asleep without you and likes it best when he gets to breastfeed his way to the land of dreams. Once again, because of that lovely release of oxytocin, you get sleepy. Baby’s sleeping, you’re sleepy… just give in and surrender. That super smart baby of yours just wants you to catch a few Z’s!