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Development milestones for children every parent must know

2 months 

  • Mouthing reflex : Suckling and swallowing are automatic when the baby's mouth or lips are touched

  • Rooting reflex : When baby tries to find the nipple for feeding
  • Startle or Moro's reflex : occurs when the baby hears a loud noise ( maximum in 1st month , fades away by 2 to 3 months )
  • Grasp reflex : When baby will grasp a finger or object placed in its palm (maximum is the first 2 months , fades away by 5 to 6 months )
  • Raises head when on stomach
  • Makes a fist
  • Begins to smile at people 
  • Move hands to mouth and suck it
  • Tries to look at pregnant
  • Coos and makes gurgling noises
  • Turns head towards sounds
  • Follows people and things with eyes

 4 months

  • Smiles spontaneously at people
  • Likes to play with people and cries when play stops
  • Copies movements like frowning or smiling

  • Babbles with expression
  • Cries differently to show hunger , pain or tiredness
  • Responds to affection
  • Reaches for toy with one hand
  • Uses hand and eyes together , likes seeing a toy and reaching for it
  • Follows moving objects with eyes from side to side
  • Recognizes familiar people from a distance
  • Holds head steady and unsupported

 6 months

  • Recognizes familiar faces and knows if a person is a stranger
  • Likes to play with others especially parents
  • Looks at self in a mirror

  • Responds to own name
  • Makes sounds to show joy and displeasure
  • Begins to say consonant sounds ( jabbering with m , b )
  • Looks around at things nearby
  • Shows curiosity about things and tries to get things that are out of reach
  • Begins to pass things from one hand to the other
  • Rolls over in both directions (front to back , back to front )
  • Begins to sit without support
  • When standing , supports weight on legs and might bounce
  • Rocks back and forth

9 months

  • May be afraid of strangers 
  • May be clingy with familiar adults
  • Has favorite
    toys
  • Understands 'No'
  • Makes a lot of different sounds
  • Copies sounds and gestures of others
  • Uses fingers to point at things
  • Watches the path of something as it falls
  • Plays peek-a-boo
  • Put things in its mouth
  • Moves things smoothly from one hand to the other
  • Picks up things between thumb and index finger
  • Crawls , Stands , Holding onto a support
  • Can get into sitting position and sits without support
  • Pulls to stand

 1 year

  • Is shy or nervous with strangers
  • Cries when mom or dad leaves
  • Has favorite things and people
  • Shows fear in some situations
  • Hands a book when it wants to hear a story
  • Repeats sounds or actions to get attention
  • Puts out arm or leg to help with dressing
  • Responds to simple spoken requests

  • Uses simple gestures like shaking head 'no' or waving 'bye-bye'
  • Makes sounds with changes in tone
  • Says 'mama' and 'dada' and exclamations like 'uh-oh'
  • Tries to say words you say
  • Explores things in different ways , like shaking , banging , throwing
  • Finds hidden things easily
  • Looks at the right picture or thing when its named
  • Copies gestures
  • Starts to use things correctly (drinks from a cup , brushes hair)
  • Bangs two things together
  • Put things in a container , takes things out of container
  • Pokes with index (pointer) finger
  • Follows simple directions like 'pick up the toy'
  • Gets to a sitting position without help
  • Pulls up to stand , walks holding on to furniture ('cruising')
  • May take a few steps without holding or may stand alone

 18 months 

  • Likes to hand things to others as play
  • May have temper tantrums
  • May be afraid of strangers
  • Shows affection to familiar people
  • May cling to caregivers in new situations

  • Points to show what it wants or something interesting
  • Explores alone but with parent close by
  • Says several single words
  • Says No and shakes head
  • Knows what ordinary things are like telephone , brush , spoon 
  • Points to get the attention of others
  • Shows interest in a doll or stuffed animal by pretending to feed
  • Points to one body part
  • Scribbles on his own
  • Walks alone
  • May walk up steps and run
  • Pulls toys while walking
  • Can help undress herself
  • Drinks from a cup and eats with a spoon

2 years

  • Copies others , especially adults and older children
  • Gets excited when with other children
  • Shows more and more independence

  • Shows defiant behavior ( doing what it has not been told not to)  
  • Plays mainly beside other children , but is beginning to include other children , such as in chase games
  • Points to things or pictures when they are named
  • Knows names of familiar people and body parts
  • Says sentences with 2 to 4 words
  • Follows simple instructions
  • Repeats words overheard in conversation
  • Points to things in a book
  • Finds things even when hidden under two or three covers
  • Begins to sort shapes and colors
  • Completes sentences and rhymes in familiar books 
  • Plays simple make-believe games
  • Builds towers of 4 or more blocks
  • Might use one hand more than the other
  • Follows two-step instructions such as "Pick up your shoes and put them in the closet"
  • Names items in a picture book (cat , bird , dog , etc )
  • Stands on tiptoe
  • Kicks a ball
  • Begins to run
  • Climbs onto and down from furniture without help
  • Walks up and down stairs holding on
  • Throws ball overhand
  • Makes or copies straight lines and circles

3 year

  • Takes turns in games
  • Shows concern for crying friend
  • Understands the idea of mine , his and hers  
  • Shows a wide range of emotions

  • Separates easily from mom and dad
  • May get upset with major changes in routine
  • Dresses and undresses self
  • Follows instructions with 2 or 3 steps
  • Can name most familiar things
  • Understands words like in / on / under
  • Says first name , age and sex
  • Names a friend
  • Says words like - I / me / we / you / and some plurals ( cars , dogs , cats )
  • Talks well enough for strangers to understand most of the time
  • Carries on a conversation using 2 or 3 sentences
  • Can work with buttons , levers and moving parts
  • Does puzzles with 3 or 4 pieces
  • Understands what 'two' means
  • Turns book pages one at a time
  • Builds towers of more than 6 blocks
  • Screws and unscrews jar lids or turns door handle
  • Climbs well
  • Runs easily
  • Pedals a tricycle
  • Walks up and down stairs 

4 to 5 years

  • Enjoys doing new things
  • Plays Mom and Dad
  • Is more and more creative with make-believe-play
  • Would rather play with other children than by itself

  • Often cant tell whats real and whats make-believe
  • Talks about what she likes and what she is interested in
  • Knows some basic rules of grammar , such as correctly using he and she 
  • Sings a song or says a poem from memory
  • Tells stories
  • Can say first and last name
  • Names some colors and some numbers
  • Understands the idea of counting
  • Starts to understand time
  • Remembers parts of a story
  • Understands the idea of same and different
  • Draws a person with 2 to 4 body parts
  • Uses scissors
  • Starts to copy some capital letters
  • Plays board or card games
  • Tells you what it thinks is going to happen next in the book
  • Catches a bounced ball most of the time
  • Pours , cuts with supervision and mashes own food.
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