A REAL 1950s Baby Schedule for a 1 Month Old

A REAL 1950s Baby Schedule for a 1 month old. This vintage schedule for the 1950s housewife is from the Better Homes and Gardens Baby Book.

Thank you for sharing us with your friends!

This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, I may receive, at no additional cost to you, a small commission. Find out more on my Disclosures page, and thank you so much for your support!

The best thing about raising children in the “good old days” was that there was a definite way of doing things. As Scary Mommy puts it, “There weren’t 2,365 parenting styles to choose from, and be judged by. Mother knows best. Don’t talk back. Just wait till I tell your father. Eat your Jell-O.”

I really need one definite way of doing things. Being an ADHD perfectionist, I get analysis paralysis REALLY easily. In this day, I can’t any longer do everything that a 1950s mom could, but I still do as much vintage child raising as I can. And one of the best tools I have are my 1950s schedules, which I use as a guideline with my babies and children. This is what a genuine 1950s Baby schedule for a 1-month-old looks like, and how I adapt it for my own babies.

Why I use a 1950s Baby schedule for a 1-month-old

The reason for starting a schedule early is a very traditional one: that regularity is the first step in discipline. But when you look deeper, this is not only traditional but also very true. A functioning society relies on discipline; discipline is the root of self-governance. Also, most babies are healthier and happier when they know what to expect and when. They are more secure.

Does a schedule mean cry it out?

No, a schedule does not mean cry it out! That kind of cry it out technique is Nazi parenting! That said, several pediatricians have condoned cry-it-out (affiliate link), and the best research shows that cry-it-out encourages nighttime sleep, doesn’t hurt the baby, and is better for the parents. (If you’re interested in finding out more about motherhood best practices and the research behind them, I totally recommend Cribsheet (affiliate link), a book by a mother and economist. It’s fantastic!)

Is a schedule harmful to a baby?

The schedule doesn’t harm the baby; bad parenting harms the baby! Seriously, though, this idea comes from attachment parenting advocates, who say that a rigid schedule causes failure-to-thrive babies. Popular modern parent-led methods, like the Babywise series (affiliate link), have been accused of causing failure-to-thrive babies. (Honestly, the best thing you can do, for yourself and your marriage, is to read Babywise when your baby is born!)

What actually happens is that the parent puts too much emphasis on the schedule, instead of focusing on the baby. They often end up feeling stressed, which reduces their milk supply. Sometimes, the baby is undernourished (but that happens with attachment parenting, too!), and the parent doesn’t notice because they are inexperienced or inattentive to the baby’s cues and needs. But if schedules caused failure-to-thrive, you can bet that they wouldn’t be used in the NICU. And they are!

That said, I repeat the caveat of EVERY parent-led method, including my vintage baby manual: don’t put the schedule first, put the baby first. A vintage 1950s Baby Schedule for a 1-month-old might not work for you! The baby needs to fit smoothly into the household for the sake of the mother’s health and sanity. But the baby is a person, entirely dependent on the love and care of others, who is in a delicate state. Be gentle. Take things easy for the first few weeks, and help the baby find the rhythm you want him to have. Just be consistent and be loving. You really cannot love a baby too much!

How often should Baby eat?

As a general rule, you should aim for no more than three hours from the beginning of one feeding to the beginning of the next. So if you start nursing at 10, start the next nursing at 1. Sometimes, you need to do every 2 hours. For the first 3-4 weeks, watch the baby closely for hunger cues, and wake the baby if necessary, to make sure he feeds enough. Sleep training will come later! Right now, nourishment is the most important thing!

During the first few weeks, I feed my baby for 25-35 minutes on one side, and “bubble” him (aka burp him) at least 3 times. When he is thoroughly full, I change him and let him go to sleep or be awake, as he sees fit. Then, I pump on the other side for at least 5-10 minutes. The next time, I will nurse him on that side. If I have a colicky baby or one that is gassy or fussy, I pump immediately before nursing, to draw off the foremilk on that side, rather than after. I don’t usually go to a traditional, every-four-hour feeding schedule until the baby is about 4 months old.

What about sleep training?

I am actually a fan of cosleeping, by which I mean keeping the baby in a bassinet, next to your bed, for the first month or two. (It also happens to be a 1950s recommendation!) I am also a fan of putting older babies in their own room. With a door. And darkness. And, preferably, silence — but that is difficult if you have more than one child! Anyway, I don’t really try to sleep train until they are about 6-8 weeks old. Before that, they are still getting used to this big, uncomfortable world.

Even during those first weeks, there is some teaching going on. I always swaddle them. If they are asleep, and they start grumbling and fussing, I avoid picking them up right away. But I DON’T leave them to actually, full-on cry for more than 5 minutes before I check them to see what’s wrong. I use what Pamela Druckerman calls “the 5-minute pause” (affiliate link) a LOT.

A real 1950s Baby schedule for a 1-month-old

This 1950s Baby schedule for a 1-month-old comes from Better Homes and Gardens Baby Book (affiliate link). The schedule is already on the 4-hour-interval. I don’t use it like this, because I do a 3-hour-interval, which you can find at the bottom. ALWAYS CHECK WITH YOUR BABY’S PEDIATRICIAN BEFORE USING ADVICE FOUND ON THE INTERNET. (Please.)

6:00 am. Nursing (or bottle feeding) 10-12 minutes at first, but increasing as your nipples toughen and Baby gets stronger. After the feeding, make bed and Baby dry and clean, then put him back to bed.

9:30 am. Bath

10:00 am. Nursing or bottle-feeding same as above.

10:30 am to 2:00 pm. Nap in his own room, with the door shut and the window open. The temperature shouldn’t be below 60 degrees F.

2:00 pm. Nursing and bottle feeding, as above.

3:00 pm to 4:00 pm. Airing, out of doors when the baby is past 3 weeks of age and the weather isn’t stormy or too cold. Otherwise, in the bedroom.

5:00 pm to 6:00 pm. Exercise period. Fun for all! Put Baby on your big bed with all his clothing but the diaper removed. (Have a large thick pad over the bed to protect it.) The room temperature should be 75 degrees F. Let Baby kick freely. It’s a fine idea to massage his back and hold him during the last half hour of this period. Visit with him, love him, carry him about the house. This will rest him for the night. Don’t bounce him or throw him around, however. That comes under the head of over-stimulation and interferes with the sleep and digestion of most babies.

6:00 pm. Nursing or bottle feeding. Put on his nightgown, and return him to bed in a room by himself with the door closed, light out, and window open. Have the temperature not lower than 60 degrees F.

10:00 pm. Nursing or bottle feeding.

2:00 am. Nursing or bottle feeding when Baby wakens. Don’t wake him for it. This feeding is usually eliminated when he’s 6-7 weeks old.

How my 1950s Baby schedule looks at 1 month old

I mentioned that I feed every three hours, so my schedule looks like this:

6:00 am. Nursing for at least 25-35 minutes, keeping him awake if necessary. After the feeding, make bed and Baby dry and clean, then put him back to bed.

9:00 am. Nursing same as above.

9:30 am. Bath

10:00 am to 12:00 pm. Nap in his own room, with the door shut and the window open. The temperature shouldn’t be below 60 degrees F.

12:00 pm. Serve lunch to the other children, then nursing, as above.

1:00 pm to 3:00 pm. Nap in his own room with the door shut and the window open. The temperature shouldn’t be below 60 degrees F.

3:00 pm. Nursing, as above.

3:30 pm to 4:00 pm. Airing, out of doors when the baby is past 3 weeks of age and the weather isn’t stormy or too cold. Otherwise, in the bedroom.

5:00 pm to 6:00 pm. Exercise period. Fun for all! Put Baby on your big bed with all his clothing but the diaper removed. (Have a large thick pad over the bed to protect it.) The room temperature should be 75 degrees F. Let Baby kick freely. It’s a fine idea to massage his back and hold him during the last half hour of this period. Visit with him, love him, carry him about the house. This will rest him for the night. Don’t bounce him or throw him around, however. That comes under the head of over-stimulation and interferes with the sleep and digestion of most babies.

6:00 pm. Nursing. Put on his nightgown, and return him to bed in a room by himself with the door closed, light out, and window open. Have the temperature not lower than 60 degrees F.

9:00 pm. Nursing.

12:00 am. Nursing.

3:00 am. Nursing. As Baby grows, begin shifting the night feedings toward feeding at 10:00 pm and 2:00 pm. The 2:00 pm feeding will be dropped around 2 months.

And that’s it! That’s how I use a vintage schedule, even with my littlest babies. If you want more info on a similar, but more modern schedule, check out Midcentury Mom’s Babywise archive — and her fabulous home! And love it or hate it, please Pin this schedule, too!

A REAL 1950s Baby Schedule for a 1 month old. This vintage schedule for the 1950s housewife is from the Better Homes and Gardens Baby Book.

Get Our Mid-Century Mom Daily Routine FREE!

Vintage Schedule for your 1-month-old over vintage illustration of sleeping infant

Thank you for sharing us with your friends!

3 thoughts on “A REAL 1950s Baby Schedule for a 1 Month Old”

  1. Hey! I bought the Better Homes and Gardens Baby Book that is linked above. When it got here I was unable to find a baby schedule in it. Looking closer the one linked (and the matching one I recieved) was published in the late 60s. What edition has the schedule? Thank you!

Comments are closed.