Pediatricians will typically use standardized tools to evaluate a child’s development. These most times consist of questionnaires that parents fill out either in person or prior to an appointment. At CHAMPS we want to SEE your child doing these activities while observing them. We use safe structures and equipment like the ones from Wiwiurka to evaluate communication, gross and fine motor skills as well as problem-solving and social skills.
Typically, children develop motor skills from the head down. First comes head control and then control over the upper body. The typical pattern for motor milestones is rolling over, then sitting, pulling up, standing, walking, and climbing. Small, fine motor skills, such as grasping objects, putting blocks in a cup, and scribbling are important milestones, too.
The development of foundational motor skills in childhood is essential to promoting an active lifestyle and the prevention of obesity
Allowing your little one to climb on low and safe structures can help nurture these areas of development. Children learn by trying, falling and getting up. Our goal as parents is not to keep them from falling, but to teach them how to prevent that on their own and how to get up again and try.
To this point, the United Kingdom has modified its guidelines on play, arguing that the culture has gone too far by leaching healthy risks out of childhood: new guidelines on play by the national commission state, “The goal is not to eliminate risk.”
Moves between laying down and sitting upright without help
Crawls on hands and knees
Pulls to a standing position with one foot leading
Cruises around furniture
Walks with two hands held
Walks with one hand held
Stands alone for a few seconds
Crawls up stairs
Stands up from the floor without support
Walks alone well
Squats and stands back up without holding onto support
Walks up stairs with hands or rails to help
Crawls down the stairs (on belly, feet first)
Can run, though falls easily
Kicks a ball forward
Walks and runs fairly well
Jumps in place with both feet off the ground
Walks up and down stairs alone
Kicks a ball with either foot
Balance on one foot for a few seconds
Jump forward 10-24 inches
Catches a large ball
Rides a tricycle
By 4 years
Can run, jump and climb well, is beginning to skip
Hops proficiently on one foot
Can do hopscotch
Catches a ball reliably
By 5 years
Skips on alternate feet and jump rope
Begins to skate and swim
Rides bicycle with/without training wheels
Recommendations for Parents as per the American Academy of Pediatrics:
Use play to help meet milestones. From birth, infants use play to explore the world around them as well as to learn and develop important life skills.
Show your infant interesting objects, such as a brightly colored mobile or toy.
Talk to your infant often to familiarize him or her with your voice, and respond when he or she coos and babbles.
Place your infant in different positions so he or she can see the world from different angles.
Let your infant bring safe objects to his or her mouth to explore and experience new textures.
Vary facial expressions and gestures so that your infant can imitate them. Imitate your infant’s sounds and engage in a back-and-forth conversation using your infant’s sounds as a prompt.
Use a mirror to show faces to your infant. Place a safety mirror at infant level.
Provide your infant with a safe environment to crawl and explore.
Place your infant in a variety of positions, such as on his or her tummy, side, etc.
Give your infant opportunities to learn that his or her actions have effects (for example, when he or she drops a toy and it falls to the ground). Put a few toys within the reach of your infant so he or she can take toys out and play with them.
Allow your child to spend time with objects and toys that he or she enjoys.
Give your child pens, markers, or crayons and paper to practice scribbling.
Encourage your child to interact with peers.
Help your child explore his or her body through different movements (for example, walking, jumping, and standing on 1 leg).
Provide opportunities to create make-believe situations with objects (for example, pretending to drink out of an empty cup or offering toys that enable pretend play).
Respond when your child speaks, answer questions, and provide verbal encouragement.
Provide blocks, plastic containers, wooden spoons, and puzzles.
Read regularly to and with your child. Encourage pretend play based on these stories.
Sing songs and play rhythms so that your child can learn and join in the fun.
Provide opportunities for your child to sing and dance.
Tell stories to your child and ask questions about what he or she remembers.
Give your child time and space to act out imaginary scenes, roles, and activities.
Allow your child to move between make-believe games and reality (for example, playing house and helping you with chores).
Schedule time for your child to interact with friends to practice socializing and building friendships.
Encourage your child to try a variety of movements in a safe environment (for example, hopping, swinging, climbing, and doing somersaults).