Monitoring Your Child’s Growth And Development Progress

Following the developmental markers of a growing child will assist in identifying any developmental delays that may need to be addressed. 

Parents have a duty to ensure the healthy growth of their children. As children grow, they reach various milestones, which are milestones to celebrate. It is therefore critical for parents to keep a close eye on their development and growth.

The reasons for its importance.

By keeping track of a child’s developmental milestones during their growth, potential delays can be detected and effectively addressed. The most valuable contribution to this process will come from the child’s parents or caregivers, who can provide updates during their next well-child check-up.

Tips for Monitoring Your Child’s Development 

It’s advisable to begin monitoring your child’s development from birth to five years old, covering areas such as physical, cognitive, verbal, social, and emotional milestones. You can use a checklist of developmental milestones, which are typical achievements most children reach at a certain age, to determine if your child is on track.

Please note that these milestones are not a one-size-fits-all standard for children’s growth. Some kids may reach them sooner, while others may reach them later. To ensure your child’s development is on course and that they’re getting the appropriate nutrients for their age, your doctor may suggest vitamins or other supplements to support their growth. If you have concerns about significant delays in your child’s development, it’s best to consult with your pediatrician for evaluation.

Here’s a general outline of the developmental achievements typically accomplished by most children at a particular age:

AgePhysical / Movement DevelopmentCognitiveVerbal / CommunicationSocial / Emotional
2 Months Old• Lift their head while lying on their stomach • Make movements with their arms and legs• Follow you with their eyes when you move• Respond to sudden, loud noises in their environment• Soothe or smile in response to your voice.
4 Months Old• Keep their head steady when held without support • Grasp a toy when placed in their hand • Put their hands in their mouth • Prop themselves up on their elbows or arms while lying on their belly• Study their own hands• Produce soft cooing sounds • Respond with sounds when spoken to • Turn their head towards you when they hear your voice• Smile spontaneously • Giggle • Look at you or make sounds to seek your attention.
6 Months Old• Roll from their belly to their back • Push up on straight arms while lying on their belly • Use their hands for support when sitting • Explore objects by putting them in their mouth• Close their mouth when no longer interested in eating• Make blowing sounds with their lips • Squeal with delight• Identify familiar individuals • Laugh out loud.
9 Months Old• Sit independently • Balance themselves while sitting without support • Shift objects from one hand to the other• Search for items they have dropped• Make random sounds such as “mamamama” or “dadadada” • Raise their arms to signal they want to be picked up• Display shyness or caution around unfamiliar people • Express emotions such as happiness, sadness, anger, or surprise through facial expressions • Respond when their name is called • Cry, reach, or look for you when you depart • Smile or laugh while playing peek-a-boo.
1 Year Old• grasp small objects with their thumb and index finger • place items inside a container • stand up with assistance • walk while holding onto a support like furniture • drink from a cup with assistance• search for objects you hid from them• wave goodbye • comprehend the meaning of “no”• refer to their parents by a specific name (such as “mom” or “dad”).
2 Years Old• Walk with or without support • Use one hand to hold an item while using the other for another action • Play with switches, knobs, or buttons on toys • Kick a ball and run • Start using a spoon to eat• Point to objects when asked about them • Develop a preference for using one hand over the other• Say at least two words to communicate • Use gestures like nodding or blowing a kiss• Recognize when someone is sad or upset • Observe your facial expressions in unfamiliar situations.
3 Years Old• Independently put on clothing, such as a jacket • Connect small items, like beads • Use a fork to eat• Identify actions in pictures or books when asked • Recognize basic objects and shapes • Draw a circle after being taught• Utter their own first name • Tell simple stories, even if they may not be grammatically correct • Ask questions like “what,” “who,” “why,” or “where”• Soothe themselves after 10 minutes when left alone
4 Years Old• grip a pencil or crayon using their fingers and thumb • make a drawing of a person • feed themselves with a fork and spoon • serve themselves food with adult supervision • move around without support• know some colors by name • steer clear of hazardous situations, like jumping from a tall place or touching hot objects• recite words from a story or song • describe a single event from their day • respond to simple questions, like “What is a crayon for?”• show a desire to play with other kids • comfort others when they are upset, such as with a hug • adapt their behavior to the setting, like when they are at home, the playground, or church
5 Years Old• Engage in physical activities like running, hopping, or jumping.• Count up to ten. • Write some of the letters in their name. • Follow instructions and rules. • Grasp the idea of money. • Show a clear preference for using one hand over the other. • Speak using the future tense.• Respond to basic questions about a story. • Identify or recite simple rhymes.• Complete simple tasks like tidying up after a meal. • Participate in creative expressions like singing, dancing, or acting.

The early years of a child’s life play a significant role in their development, so it is crucial for parents to closely observe these changes. Although there are general guidelines to track a child’s growth, parents have the best understanding of their child. If there is anything concerning you about your child’s development, it is advisable to immediately speak with a pediatrician.

Sources: 

https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/childdevelopment/screening.html
https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/actearly/milestones/
https://www.webmd.com/parenting/3-to-4-year-old-milestones
https://www.webmd.com/parenting/4-to-5-year-old-milestones
https://www.verywellfamily.com/5-year-old-developmental-milestones-620713
https://www.verywellfamily.com/what-is-a-developmental-milestone-2795123
https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/expert-answers/multivitamins/faq-20058310
https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/actearly/whyActEarly.html