As children grow, there are developmental milestones they will achieve. Every child is a little different, but there are milestones that you can expect to see at each age.
Infants (0-12 months)
In the first year of life, babies are growing and learning constantly. They are learning all about the world around them. They learn to focus their vision, explore their tiny world, and learn through touch. They are also beginning cognitive development, developing their memory, language, thinking, and reasoning. They start babbling and saying things like mama or dada. Your baby will start crawling and maybe even walking.
As an infant, your baby is also developing a relationship with you. These first years provide that crucial bond between parent and child. Parents who are present and loving provide a strong foundation as their baby grows.
Toddler Milestones (1-3 years)
Look out, world; your baby is a toddler, which means they are on the move! Toddlers are exploring more. They are starting to walk, which means they can get around more. Their little hands are into everything!
Toddlers are also learning to communicate and may be testing out their speech. They begin to recognize people and call them by name. They’ll also use their speech to express their needs. When they first start speaking, you may hear a lot of the word “no” as they already begin to exert their independence.
These years are full of change and development. Your child has developed skills like dressing themselves, playing sports, and basic self-care. They’re also beginning to grow as an individual.
All of your child’s skills are developing very quickly. This includes their physical, mental, and social skills. They’re trying new things and meeting new people. Making new friends at school or trying new sports are helping them to develop.
Children are continuing to grow as individuals during this time. They have some established friendships and are also navigating peer pressure. Children with positive relationships within their families are more able to ignore these pressures.
This is a time of many changes. Children are undergoing physical, mental & social changes. The peer pressure may increase. Teens may find pressure to try alcohol or drugs. They may also experience pressure to engage in sexual activity.
Physical changes happen as puberty begins. Boy’s voices start to deepen. Girls start their period and begin to develop breasts. It can be an awkward time as others notice these changes. Your child is growing and changing into an independent person, but they still need family support and relationships.
The teenage years can be challenging. Teen’s bodies continue to change, and they are still developing their unique selves. Girls, in particular, may struggle with negative body images or even eating disorders. Your child may begin to date and have their first serious romantic relationship or heartbreak.
Teens may also get their first job around this time and starting to think about leaving home. This is the time when they will begin to think about college or their first full-time job.
Every phase of your child’s growth can be exciting and challenging. What is most important is that your child feels a closeness with you as a parent. Children with healthy parent-child relationships will be more equipped to deal with the challenges they will face during their childhood and teen years.