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Your child’s developmental milestones and why it is important to track

Updated: Sep 4, 2021

As your child grows, a lot of changes will happen across the different areas of their development. These areas of development are grouped into 4 main areas; communication, cognitive, emotional, and physical.

  • Communication: this refers to your child’s ability to understand (receptive) and produce (expressive) language. Typically, your child will understand and respond to a lot of things you say long before they start speaking.

  • Cognitive or intellectual domain describes your child’s ability to process learning, thinking and solve problems

  • Social and emotional: how your child initiates and responds to the emotions of others

  • Physical or motor development refers to how your child uses their small and large muscles to move around.

Your child will experience changes along these 4 domains to show they are developing. As they grow and experience these changes, they achieve certain naturally pre-determined targets. These naturally pre-determined targets are called developmental milestones.

Developmental milestones are age related targets that your child meets that let you know how well their development is progressing. Some examples of these milestones that you are very likely familiar with include: being able to hold their neck, sitting, crawling, first smiles, first words, first steps, etc. Don’t we all wait for those amazing firsts! Rightly so too; milestones when met at expected times signify that your child is doing well developmentally.

While it is important to understand that children will meet these milestones at different times (some earlier, others a little latter), it is important to keep track of how your child’s milestones are progressing. Being an informed parent helps you better support your child. This is particularly important given our modern-day environments where children have less opportunities for play and interaction with other children. More children are presenting with delays in social, language and fine motor skill. Finding out early means you can start being intentional in providing your child with the right opportunities that support their development. Delayed milestones not identified and resolved on time may impact your child’s future academic and social success.

For more detailed information about developmental milestones, click on this external link to access information on the different milestones you should expect to see your child achieve.

Interested in a more professional view that is specific to your child? Click here to access a standardized test that helps you know if your child is an early achiever or spot on track with their milestones. Test is appropriate for children 6 months to 8 years.

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