Childhood is a time of tremendous growth and learning. How very exciting to be a baby… or a two-year-old… or get on a school bus for the first time. There’s so much to know!
We all come into the world like small waiting sponges, ready to absorb what’s around us. Yet we’re all different, too — another of life’s little marvels. We also develop at different rates. Some children speed along, practically running before they walk. Others take their time — or need more time. And still others may ultimately need four wheels to get around.
From the National Dissemination Center (NICHCY)
Parents, siblings, grandparents, daycare providers, teachers, and friends watch eagerly for each new step and progression in a child’s skills. If a skill is not learned “on time,” they may worry. Juana’s not sitting up yet, but the baby next door is. Hannah should be talking in full sentences by now! Frank and Ahmed aren’t learning to read as easily as the rest of the class.
But what’s “on time?” What’s “normal?” Does “normal” have a range? Yes, “normal” has a range. But growth does tend to follow a certain sequence. Skills are expected to emerge at more or less the ages described below.
Here are just a few of many milestones a typically-developing child reaches in the first year of life and beyond.
By 3 months of age
lift head when held at your shoulder
lift head and chest when lying on his stomach
turn head from side to side when lying on his stomach