Where is your child’s development at?
Developmental milestones are the progressive steps your child takes to becoming independent. By understanding early childhood milestones, you are better able to observe, and therefore support, your child’s development.
Knowledge of these milestones, their sequence and their timing, gives parents the confidence to seek early, professional advice if they believe there may be an issue.
Click here to read more on the benefits of Early Intervention
Developmental milestones such as crawling and first words are important, as they assist children to attend, learn and socialise within their environments and according to their age.
Milestones can be broken down into five categories:
- Gross motor skills
- Fine motor skills
- Language skills
- Thinking skills
- Social interaction
Gross motor skills – such as crawling and walking involve the movement and coordination of the arms, legs and other large body parts.
Fine motor skills – such as stacking blocks or colouring involve the movement and coordination of the smaller muscles of the body such as the wrist, hand, fingers, ankle, feet and toes.
Language skills – including speech and comprehension are our ability to use language. Language skills include; receptive language, expressive language, listening, reading, writing, literacy and comprehension.
Thinking skills – are involved in the process we use when we are trying to make sense of a situation or experience. This involves problem-solving; decision-making, evaluation, memory, organisation, reasoning and critical thinking.
Social interaction – which is the exchange between two or more people and how we act and react to those around us. Social interaction involves eye contact; engagement, emotional regulation and recognition, sharing, turn taking, following rules and regulations, and the feeling of belonging.
Below, is a table that highlights the milestones for children aged 2 months to 5 years. These milestones are rough guides, with each child being individual, and achieving these milestones at slightly different ages.
|Stages||Developmental Milestones Table|
For more information on milestones, visit the following PDF put together by the South Australia Government http://www.parenting.sa.gov.au/pegs/peg77.pdf
Gaining a clearer understanding of developmental milestones will help you to better observe where your child is at, and to support your child’s growth, development and well-being. Remember that the milestones outlined above are just a guide. Every child is individual in their development.
If you feel your child may be behind in their developmental milestones, you can consider seeking advice and help from your GP, an Occupational Therapist, Speech Pathologist, Teacher or Child Health Nurse. They will be able to further assess your child, give you strategies and activities to assist in their development, as well as, refer on for further assessment if need be.
Did you know that at Kern, you can call anytime to speak to an Occupational Therapist or Speech Pathologist directly?
This free telephone consult is where you can get more information relevant to your child’s development, get advice on what activities you can do with your child and where is best to go if your child needs to be further assessed. This is a great next step if you are unsure about what to do or where to go.
Kern Paediatric Therapists are committed to focusing on the needs and goals of each child and their family. We believe in working collaboratively with parents and teachers, as well as other health professionals involved, to help each child reach their individual goals.
Click here to find out more about Kern Paediatrics, and our approach to assisting children to learn and grow through play.
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