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Normal Child Development

Developmental milestones are characteristics most children can achieve by a certain age. How your child moves, acts, plays and learns to speak are important indicators in their development. This table can be your guide for a normal child development.

Milestones your child should reach by the end of 2 months.

 0-2 months
Gross MotorLifts head up off the floor for 1-2 seconds OR
lifts head up 2-3 inches off the floor for 4-5 seconds
Straightens both legs
Turns head to breath
While lying on the side, rolls to back
Fine Motor
Makes sounds when content
Cries when hungry or uncomfortable
Moves head, arms, and legs in response to sounds
may gaze at a person for up to 1 minute when spoken to
CognitivePays attention to faces
Starts to recognize familiar faces
Coos, makes gurgling sounds
Turns head toward sounds
EmotionalBegins to smile at people
Tries to look at parents
ExamplesNormal Development 0-2 mo

Milestones your child should reach by the end of 4 months.

Gross MotorSmiles spontaneously, especially at people

Likes to play with people and might cry when playing stops

Copies some movements and facial expressions, like smiling or frowning
Fine MotorHolds head steady, unsupported

Pushes down on legs when feet are on a hard surface

May be able to roll over from tummy to back

Can hold a toy and shake it and swing at dangling toys

Brings hands to mouth

When lying on stomach, pushes up to elbows
CognitiveLets you know if he is happy or sad

Responds to affection

Reaches for toy with one hand

Uses hands and eyes together, such as seeing a toy and reaching for it

Follows moving things with eyes from side to side

Watches faces closely

Recognizes familiar people and things at a distance
LanguageBegins to babble

Babbles with expression and copies sounds he hears

Cries in different ways to show hunger, pain, or being tired
Smiles spontaneously, especially at people

Likes to play with people and might cry when playing stops

Copies some movements and facial expressions, like smiling or frowning
Example Video
Normal Child Development 2-4 mo

Milestones your child should reach by the end of 6 months.

 4-6 months
Gross Motor
Rolls over in both directions

Begins to sit without support

When standing, supports weight on legs and might bounce

Rocks back and forth

Starts crawling, may go backward before moving forward
Fine MotorPasses objects from one hand to another
Rolls over to get to the desire object
Tries to prop him/herself up
CognitiveLooks around at things nearby

Brings things to mouth

Shows curiosity about things and tries to get things that are out of reach

Begins to pass things from one hand to the other
LanguageResponds to sounds by making sounds

Strings vowels together when babbling

Takes turns with parent while making sounds

Responds to own name

Makes sounds to show joy and displeasure

Begins to say consonant sounds (“m,” “b”)
EmotionalKnows familiar faces and begins to recognize strangers

Plays with others, especially parents

Responds to other people’s emotions and often seems happy

Likes to look at self in a mirror

Milestones your child should reach by the end of 9 months.

 6-9 mo
Gross MotorStands, holding on

Can get into sitting position

Sits without support

Pulls to stand

Fine MotorMoves things smoothly from one hand to the other

Picks up things like cereal o’s between thumb and index finger
CognitiveWatches the path of something as it falls

Looks for things he/she sees you hide

Plays peek-a-boo

Puts things in his/her mouth
LanguageStarts to understand “no”

Makes a lot of different sounds like “mamamama” and “bababababa”

Copies sounds and gestures of others

Uses fingers to point at things
EmotionalMay be afraid of strangers

May be clingy with familiar adults

Has favorite toys

Milestones your child should reach by the end of 12 months.

 9-12 mo
Gross MotorGets to a sitting position without help

Pulls up to stand, walks holding on to furniture

May take a few steps without holding on

May stand alone
Fine MotorPinch small objects (e.g. cheerios) with thumb and pointer finger

Move objects from one hand to the other

Drop and pick up toys

Hold a spoon (but not yet feed herself)

Hold his own bottle

Hold out an arm or leg to help with dressing

Wave hello or goodbye
CognitiveExplores things in different ways, like shaking, banging, throwing

Finds hidden things easily

Looks at the right picture or thing when it’s named

Copies gestures

Starts to use things correctly; (drinks from a cup, brushes hair
Bangs two things together)

Puts things in a container, takes things out of a container

Lets things go without help

Pokes with index (pointer) finger

Follows simple directions like “pick up the toy”
Responds to simple spoken requests

Uses simple gestures, like shaking head “no” or waving “bye-bye”

Makes sounds with changes in tone (sounds more like speech)

Says “mama” and “dada” and exclamations like “uh-oh!”

Tries to say words you say
EmotionalNervous or shy with strangers

Cries when mom or dad leaves

Has favorite things and people

Can show fear in some situations

Hands you a book when he wants to hear a story

Repeats sounds or actions to get attention

Plays games such as “peek-a-boo” and “pat-a-cake”