Identifying Milestones in Babies and Toddlers

16th May 2023

As a parent or caregiver, it’s exciting to watch your child grow up and develop. From the moment they’re born, babies and toddlers hit various developmental milestones that signal progress in their physical, cognitive, and social-emotional development. Here are some milestones to look out for in babies and toddlers:

Physical Development: 
In the first few months, babies develop the ability to lift their heads while lying on their stomachs and to roll over from front to back and vice versa. By six months, they can sit up without support, crawl, and even stand with assistance. Toddlers continue to develop their gross motor skills and may start walking without assistance and climbing stairs.

Language and Communication: 
Around three months, babies begin to coo and babble, and by six months, they start to recognise familiar voices and respond to their name. They can also understand simple words like “no” and “bye-bye.” By one year, they start to say their first words, and by two years, they have a vocabulary of about 50 words and can combine two or three words into simple sentences.

Cognitive Development:
Babies and toddlers explore the world through their senses, and their cognitive development is closely tied to their physical development. They develop object permanence, the understanding that objects continue to exist even when they’re out of sight, around eight months. They also start to imitate actions and solve simple problems, like how to get a toy that’s out of reach.

Social-Emotional Development:
Babies are born with a natural ability to connect with others and engage in social interaction. By three months, they start to smile in response to social cues, and by six months, they can recognise familiar faces and respond differently to strangers. Toddlers start to show more independence and may experience separation anxiety. They also start to understand and express emotions like happiness, sadness, and anger.

It’s important to remember that every child develops at their own pace, and these milestones are just a general guide. If you have concerns about your child’s development, speak to your pediatrician. By keeping an eye out for these milestones and celebrating your child’s progress, you can help support their development and set them up for success.

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