Your Baby And The Stages Of Development

These stages are guidelines only. If you believe that there are any problems with your child you should always consult with your own doctor.

1 Month Old:
Physical development;

* arm and leg movement are reflexes
* head flops if not supported
* can see things about 10 inches away
* stares at object but does not reach
* loves skin-to-skin contact

Mental Development;
* prefers to look at high contrast patterns and faces
* alert 1 out of every 10 hrs
* begins to trust caregiver
* most behavior is reflexive
* will cry if under stimulated or over stimulated
Language Development;
* responds to voices
* small cooing begins
* likes it when you talk to her
Social Development;
* enjoys eye contact
* smiles at faces
* recognizes parent’s voices
2 Months Old:
Physical development;

* muscles relax and twitch less
* can lift head 45 degrees
* hands start to unfold
* can briefly hold rattle
* tracks moving objects

Mental Development;
* starts to make associations – cry gets a need met
* protests if needs aren’t met
* wants visual stimulation
Language Development;
* gurgles, coos, and squeals
* exhibits emotions
Social Development;
* responsive smiling
* communicates moods
* studies faces
* your baby’s personality become more obvious
3 Months Old:
Physical development;

* can stretch limbs all the way out
* can roll back to side
* holds head up to search
* plays with hands
* can hold rattle longer
* swipes with arms
* can briefly bear weight on legs

Mental Development;
* learns cause and effect
* discovers hands & feet
* likes detailed high-contrast images
Language Development;
* begins extended vowel sounds
* starts to laugh
* has different cries for different needs
Social Development;
* makes eye contact
* smiles at faces
* knows difference between parents and strangers
* stops crying when you come in the room
4 Months Old:
Physical development;

* can stand up with help
* rolls front to side
* lifts head 90 degrees
* sits with arms propped
* reaches for objects

Mental Development;
* forms mental images of what to expect when giving a cue
* is aware that people and things have labels (dada)
* starts to explore things by tasting them
Language Development;
* changes shape of mouth to change sounds
* sputters
Social Development;
* laughs hard when tickled
* greets caregiver
* social gestures-moves arms to signal “pick me up”
* likes social interaction
5 Months Old:
Physical development;

* rolls over from front to back
* grabs toes
* can wiggle forward on floor
* reaches with a good aim
* transfers objects from hand to hand

Mental Development;
* shows interest in colors
* pushes away disliked actions (wiping nose)
* displays expression of decision-making
Language Development;
* babbles (ba-ba)
* tries to mimic sounds
Social Development;
* turns head toward speaker
* watches your mouth movements
6 – 9 Months Old:
Physical development;

* can sit unsupported
* rolls over both ways
* can stand if leaning on other object
* points at objects
* picks up small objects with thumb and finger
* reaches accurately
* can feed herself
* can drink from a cup
* gets up on all fours and rocks

Mental Development;
* studies objects
* concentrates on one toy at a time
* analyses what to do with her toy
* understands the nesting of objects
* understands an object might behind something
Language Development;
* longer and more varied sounds
* experiments with different volumes and pitches of sounds
* makes 2-syllabled sounds
Social Development;
* mimics facial expressions
* exhibits moods with varied sounds and body movements
* may be shy or afraid of strangers
* responds to her name
* raises arms to signal her wanting to be picked up
* likes her reflection
9 -12 Months Old:
Physical development;

* masters crawling
* can stand when supported
* climbs on furniture
* walks with help

Mental Development;
* start to understand phrases (like “come here”)
* wants to explore things by touching everything
* builds, stacks and disassemble
Language Development;
* says simple words (“dog”, “hot”)
* understands “no”
* mimics sounds like tongue-clicking, raspberries, and cough
Social Development;
* enjoys mimicking
* points to things she want
* feels pride (especially when praised)
* likes games (peek-a-boo)
12 – 15 Months Old:
Physical development;

* walks alone
* can climb up stairs
* can grip a crayon
* can run
* bounces to music

Mental Development;
* favors one hand
* understands a word in context
* understands cause and effect
* starts pretending
* remembers
Language Development;
* likes to sing
* says several words
* says “no” and shakes head
* can follow simple direction
Social Development;
* copies and imitates
* likes to look at books together
* starts to exhibit a temper when angry
* waves good-bye
* laughs at funny things
15 – 18 Months Old:
Physical development;

* can walk backwards
* tries to kick a ball
* dances, trots, prances
* can walk in circles
* scribbles
* can throw an object

Mental Development;
* learn by exploring
* separation anxiety is less strong
* can match shapes
Language Development;
* says 10-20 words
* puts shorts words together “no-no”, “bye-bye”
* makes first sentence
Social Development;
* responds to verbal requests without signals
* loves it when you babble back to her
18 – 24 Months Old:
Physical development;

* can jump
* climbs (out of highchair and crib)
* can take clothes off
* opens doors

Mental Development;
* can understand 2-step directions
* can draw circles and lines on paper
Language Development;
* says 20-50 words
* makes 3-word sentences
Social Development;
* understands more than she says
* likes to sing