By Vanessa Rasmussen, © 2004, All rights reserved.
These guidelines can be helpful to parents in knowing what to expect from their children when they are growing and maturing. However, it should be noted that these are general milestones. Some children may take longer to achieve these than others.
- During the time-span between child-birth to 1 month, a child gets a basic idea of the senses like vision, hearing, smelling, pain, tasting and temperature. A child is totally dependent on the mother at this time.
- When a child is about 2-3 months old, he/she is capable of crying as well as smiling when they see a face.
- After 4 to 6 months, a child enjoys being cuddled, can recognize the mother and can distinguish between familiar people and strangers.
- Between 7 to 9 months, a child can stand, crawl and sit on his/her own and shows specific emotional attachment to the mother.
- Between 10 to 12 months, a child can control his/her legs and take a few steps. A child can also speak one or two simple words and can imitate sounds. Moreover, a child fears strangers, and displays emotions such as anger, and affection. He/she start responding to their own names and enjoy games like "peek-a-boo".
- Between 1 and 1½ years, a child creeps up the stairs and can walk for about 10 to 20 minutes. He/she tends to obey a few easy commands and repeat a few words. Children at this age are interested in their own image and can feed themselves.
- Between 1½ years to 2 years, a child scribbles on paper using crayons, develops a vocabulary of more than 200 words and throws temper tantrums. He can also run and kick a ball.
- Between 2 to 3 years, children can jump of a stair and ride a tricycle. They have fear of separation and also get possessive about their toys. They start using short sentences and might briefly stutter.
- Between 3 and 4 years, children can stand on one leg and jump up and down. They can draw different shapes like circle, cross, etc. and can get self sufficient in many of their daily routines. They get affectionate towards their parents and also like to share things. They play co-operatively with other children at the nursery school and imitate teachers and parents. They might even have an imaginary friend.
- Between 4 and 5 years, can dress himself/herself up. Children at this age, generally talk clearly with very few grammatical mistakes and can also narrate a story to others. Children feel pride on accomplishing things and like it when people appreciate their work. At this point, a child also prefers playing with other children, who, generally are of same age group. This builds a feeling of healthy competition amongst children.
Copyright 2001, 2004. All rights reserved. Any reproduction of this article in whole or in part without written or verbal permission is strictly prohibited. For information about reprinting this article, contact the copyright owner: Vanessa Rasmussen, Ph.D, Starting a Day Care Center, http://www.startingadaycarecenter.com.