•Communication and intellectual development
•Social, emotional and behavioural development
All children are unique and develop at their own rate. However there are key milestones we expect most children to reach during childhood. The table below summarises some of these milestones from birth to 19 years.
(gross and fine motor)Social and emotional developmentCognitive and language development Birth – 1 yearTurns head in response to sounds and sights. Gradually develops ability to hold up own head.
Makes movements with arms and legs which gradually become more controlled. Rolls over from front to back, from back to front.
When lying on tummy becomes able to lift first head and then chest, supporting self with forearms and then straight arms. Watches and explores hands and feet, e.g. when lying on back lifts legs into vertical position and grasps feet. Reaches out for, touches and begins to hold objects.
Explores objects with mouth, often picking up an object and holding it to the mouth.Enjoys the company of others and seeks contact with others from birth. Gazes at faces and copies facial movements. e.g. sticking out tongue, opening mouth and widening eyes. Responds when talked to, for example, moves arms and legs, changes facial expression, moves body and makes mouth movements. Recognises and is most responsive to main carer’s voice: face brightens, activity increases when familiar carer appears. Responds to what carer is paying attention to, e.g. following their gaze. Likes cuddles and being held: calms, snuggles in, smiles, gazes at carer’s face or strokes carer’s skin.Turns toward a familiar sound then locates range of sounds with accuracy. Listens to, distinguishes and responds to intonations and sounds of voices. Quietens or alerts to the sound of speech.
Looks intently at a person talking, but stops responding if speaker turns away. Listens to familiar sounds, words, or finger plays.
1 – 2 years
Walks alone and stands on tiptoe
Climbs on furniture and begins to run
Builds a tower of six or more blocks
Empties objects from a container
Becomes aware of his or her identity as a separate individual May become defiant
Becomes interested in playing with other children
Separation anxiety begins to fade
Speaks about 50 words
Links two words together
Uses some adjectives (big, happy)
Speaks clearly enough for parents to understand some of the words Begins to play make-believe
Begins to sort objects by shape and colour
Finds hidden objects
2 – 3 years
Walks up and down stairs, alternating feet
Kicks, climbs, runs and pedals a tricycle
Builds a tower of nine or more blocks
Manipulates small objects and turns book pages one at a time Imitates parents and playmates
Expresses affection openly
Easily separates from parents
Speaks 250 to 500 or more words
Speaks in three-and four-word sentences
Uses pronouns (I, you, we, they) and some plurals
States first name
Asks "why" questions
Correctly names some colours
Copies a circle
Understands the concepts of same and different
3 – 4 years
Stands on one foot for at least five seconds
Throws ball overhand, kicks ball forward and catches bounced ball most of the time Dresses and undresses
Cooperates with playmates
Tries to solve problems
May have a best friend
Becomes more independent
Answers simple questions
Speaks in complete sentences
Uses prepositions (under, beside, in front)
Speaks clearly enough for strangers to understand
Becomes involved in more complex imaginary play
Prints some capital letters
Draws a person with two to four body parts
Understands the concepts of morning, afternoon and night
4 – 5 years
Stands on one foot for at least 10 seconds
Hops, swings and somersaults
May learn to...