10 signs that your newborn is super smart


Photo by Kelli Elizabeth Photography

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!


  1. Crystal B. says

    My 8 month old is still like this. 🙂

  2. You should write a book! We NEED someone like you to counteract all the people spreading misinformation. I would write more, but everyone’s standing around me talking about lawn tractors. Anyway, I totally agree! Keep up the good work!

    • Ronnell says

      I agree. The positive spin on topics is not only encouraging but true.
      My nb is 18 days old. She sure does love to be right next to me and I love it too.

    • I definitely agree, too! As the first in my family to breastfeed, and especially past 6 months, I wish I had a book that helped me realize everything was normal at the time. I was SO sick of everyone telling me to just give DS a bottle instead of breastfeeding!

    • I totally agree! Especially about the sleeping part! I am glad that more families are sleeping near baby instead of harping on us for ruining our children 😉

  3. Jessica says

    My 4 month old does almost all of those, he loves to be cuddled. Lately he hasn’t let me put him down for more than 5 minutes at a time, he will not fall asleep unless he is cuddled up next to me nursing, and #5 hit it right on the money!

  4. Frances says

    Great article, and I agree with ElisaM: you should write a book! You can easily set up the first chapters in your head while Sugarbaby is cluster feeding 😀

  5. My baby must not be very smart!! lol
    Love the article though… Good work.. 🙂

  6. Silvia S. says

    I just read this and I promise this is my baby Leonardo. Car seat…absolute torture. He calms down every time when I breastfeed him. He is happy just wearing his cloth diaper…putting clothes on him is just to go outside. He is 14 weeks and has been sleeping with us from the day he was born. He loves our bed. Sometimes I regret spending money on his crib, he has never slept on it. My Leo knows what’s good for him. And yes, I learned to shower is ten minutes or less. What a beautiful experience it is. Love him!

  7. Michelle says

    Oh my, my youngest so does these! Guess he must be super smart – he’s already playing with toys that say are 18months+ (Don’t panic, I’ve checked theyr’e safe for him)

  8. Kearsten says

    LOL My 20 MONTH OLD is still like this! Haha (except the pooping parts….he tends to go every other day or so and has most of his life!)

  9. Rona G. says

    my 14th month old is still like this (1,3,4,6,7,9 and 10) 🙂 we sold our crib and the carseat is just eating up space in the car. it only get used when i am the one driving and he doesn’t have a choice. i like #4 the best because i have been wondering why he hates it bigtime when we try to put clothes on him, now i know why. And #10 is sooo true, sometimes i feel like a pacifier, but i always end up sleeping too 🙂

    • IBCLC Mommy says

      Wait- Rona G…Your baby is in that carseat no matter WHO is driving right? making sure. Never ever ever hold a baby in a moving car. Your precious boy will become a projectile and face certain death if you ever crash while holding him.

      Awesome, Awesome post! Thanks for reminding us about how smart our babies are 🙂

      • Whoa! I read that too! “it only get used when i am the one driving and he doesn’t have a choice.” Please tell me this was just a case of Mommy-brain, right?

        Anyways, I was going to leave a comment anyways saying that #5 didn’t apply to us! His cloth diapers were wonderful and the elastic held in even the most explosive diarrhea!

  10. My almost 10 months old is still like that and there is no way getting her to bed at night unless she is nursed to sleep. I get a lot of grief from family and friends but I don’t care as long as my baby is happy!

  11. Linda Moffitt says

    LOL @ #3 & #5 TOO TRUE!!!!

  12. I love this! It should be required reading for all new moms/moms of newborns. 🙂 We could all use a reminder that there are reasons for these behaviors – especially when we’re sleep-deprived and hormonal.

  13. Danielle says

    This is soooo true! Our baby is in the bed with us because it’s just easier for everyone and we’re all happier.