Child Developmental Topic Preparing for baby Stages: Pregnancy

What’s going on for baby?

A new baby in the womb is learning about the world they’ll be born into. When their whānau take good care of themselves, they’re also caring for their baby in a loving way and building an emotional connection with them.

New parents will experience a lot of emotions, ranging from joy and excitement to fear or worry. An unplanned or unwanted pregnancy or difficulty in becoming pregnant can all affect how a Mum feels towards her unborn baby. Pāpā may find it harder to build a connection with his unborn baby not experiencing all the physical changes that a māmā does.

Māmā may also feel an added responsibility as she is the key to keeping baby safe and protected so it can really help when pāpā can support her by also having a healthy lifestyle.

Now is the perfect time for whānau to talk about giving their baby the best start in life and the kind of parents they want to be.

How can parents and whānau help?

  • Choose a midwife and keep antenatal appointments.
  • Find out about whānau traditions and beliefs about pregnancy and childbirth.
  • Talk about pregnancy and childbirth with trusted whānau and friends, and share worries and concerns.
  • Learn about the different stages of baby’s growth and development.
  • Understand that the bond between baby and their whānau starts as soon as they start thinking about, and talking to, their baby.
  • Talk, sing and read to baby in the language of their whānau.
  • Get to know baby as a real, unique person.


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