Child Development by Ages
Here are some guidelines for each age group, which help you understand your child's potential. Everyone develops differently, but most children reach these milestones by a certain age. Click on the bar below to find out more about each age.
10 - 12 months
You will notice that your baby is very curious and explores his or her surroundings. Everything is interesting to your baby! He or she can now pick up those little things that they looked at before. It is really important to get down on your hands and knees and look around your home to make sure it is safe. Pick up small items your baby could put in his or her mouth and choke on. Shorten cords for blinds or draperies. Lock cabinets. Put safety plugs in electrical outlets. Your baby should still go to sleep on his or her back. However, your baby now knows how to roll over and can turn him- or herself over to make sure he or she can breathe.
What your child can see, hear and feel:
Your baby is still learning about the effect he or she has when they throw or play with something. Your baby might like to drop his or her toys against different surfaces, and is noticing all of the different sounds it makes. Also, if you put a toy behind your back, your baby may crawl to look for it. This helps your baby learn to go around, under, or over things in his or her path to get to an object he or she wants.
Your baby might also enjoy simply sitting with you, as you show him or her books with large, simple pictures of everyday items. He or she will also like simple children's songs or rhymes. Repeating words will help your baby learn the word faster. Also, your baby enjoys games like "pat-a-cake" that have rhymes and hand motions. All of these activities will help their memory develop and improve their language skills.
Social and emotional development:
By now your baby should probably understand the word "no," but even if he or she understands, but they will not always obey. Don't worry about this, because it's normal at this stage in their development.
Your baby may also try to imitate some of the things that you do. He or she might try to drink from the same cup as you, take on the phone or wave good-bye. During this period of time, you might find that your baby will only want you to take care of him or her, and will be uncomfortable around strangers. This is also normal for his or her developmental level.
Gross motor skills:
At this point in your baby's development, he or she will probably be crawling. This is that most popular way for babies of this age to get around. It's important that you make sure that there is a safe, clean space for your baby to practice crawling around so that he or she can practice in a good environment. At this point, your baby will probably only start trying to walk once he or she becomes very good at crawling around. Your baby will pull him- or herself up from the floor to stand against a couch, table or you!
After your baby has become good at crawling, he or she will be ready for the next challenge: walking! He or she will start out by using supports like furniture to move from one place to the next. This is called 'cruising.' A good idea at this time would be to make sure your baby's environment is safe for this activity. Since your baby is mobile, he or she needs to be able to move around in a safe and comfortable environment. By cushioning furniture with sharp corners, as well as items that are not stable or durable, or moving them to a less accessible place, you can help your baby prepare him- or herself for walking in a safe place. He or she will probably also want to go walking with you, by taking your hand for support. This helps your baby prepare him- or herself for his or her first step!
Fine motor skills:
As for your baby's fine motor skills development, your child should have made some great improvements by now. At this point, your baby will enjoy learning how to pick up toys in both hands and banging them together. He or she is also learning to drop things by choice, and is probably 'practicing' dropping toys and other objects to see where they will go. These steps usually lead up to your baby learning how to throw things.
Your baby might also want to pick up his or her own food. Maybe your baby is even feeding him- or herself with small bite-sized finger foods. This helps your baby learn how to use his or her thumb and index finger to pick up small objects.
Speech and language development:
Your baby should be recognizing you when you speak to him or her at this point. Maybe you'll notice that your baby starts to point his or her finger to show interest in something and share it with you. Your baby will also be learning to look at something that you point to. Your baby has also learned to recognize certain simple words, like "no." When you say "no," you baby might stop what he or she is doing and might even look at you.
Your baby should also recognize other words by now, such as "bye-bye." If you say "bye-bye" to your baby, he or she may lift their arms to you. Your baby might even say his or her first word during this period! He or she will even know what it stands for! You baby will also recognize his or her name when you call them, and will probably respond by lifting his or her head to the person who said his or her name.
10 - 12 months
- Understands the concept of object permanence.
- Gets upset if toy is removed.
- Transfers object from hand to hand.
- Stands holding onto someone.
- Pulls self up to standing.
- Can walk while holding onto furniture.
- Can stand alone, possibly for a few minutes.
- Drinks from a cup.
- Plays pat-a-cake or waves good-bye.
- Understands the meaning of "no."
- Says "mama" or "dada."
- Expresses self with gestures and sounds instead of cries.
- Can roll a ball to you.
- Uses gibberish in a conversational way.
- Says "ma-ma" and "da-da" discriminately.
- Understands "no."
- Claps hands.
- Waves bye-bye.
- Walks while holding onto furniture.
- Uses the "pincer grasp" to pick up tiny objects between his thumb and forefinger.
- Baby can stand alone.
- Drinks from a cup.
- Baby says "mama" and "dada."
- Says a few other one-syllable words (like "hi").
- Can communicate his or her wants with gestures and words instead of cries.
- Talks in conversational gibberish.
- Can pull up self to standing.
- Walks with help or alone.
- Sits down without help.
- Can bang two objects together.
- Turns through the pages of a book by flipping many pages at a time.
- Reaches sitting position without assistance.
- Crawls forward on belly.
- Assumes hands-and-knees position (on all fours).
- Crawls on hands and knees.
- Gets from sitting to crawling or prone (lying on stomach) position.
- Walks by holding on to furniture.
- Stands momentarily without support.
- May walk two or three steps without support.
- Uses pincer grasp.
- Takes objects out of containers and put objects in containers.
- Lets go of objects voluntarily.
- Pokes things with index finger.
- Tries to imitate scribbling.
- Follows a fast moving object.
- Can respond to sounds.
- Responds to his or her name.
- Understands several words and simple commands.
- Can say mamma, papa, and at least one or two other words.
- Tries to imitate animal sounds and words.
- Connects names with objects.
- Understands that objects continue to exist, even when they are not seen (object constancy).
- Points to objects with index finger.
- Waves bye.
- May develop attachment to a toy or object.
- Experiences separation anxiety and may cling to parents.
- May make brief journeys away from parents to explore in familiar settings.
- Pays increasing attention to speech.
- Responds to simple verbal requests.
- Responds to "no."
- Uses simple gestures, such as shaking head for "no."
- Babbles with inflection (changes in tone).
- Uses exclamations, such as "Uh-oh!"
- Tests parental responses to his or her behavior.
- May be fearful in some situations.
- Repeats sounds or gestures for attention.
- Finger-feeds him- or herself
- Extends arm or leg to help when being dressed.
Want to raise a well-rounded child? Discover the different kinds of developmental benefits to see how you can help your child grow into an intelligent and healthy individual! Click an image to find out more!
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