As parents, you need to acknowledge and respect your child's uniqueness and growth pace.  While children may grow and develop differently, you need to be mindful of their developmental milestones. 

Developmental milestones are age-specific tasks or abilities that most children can do at a given age range.  You can use the milestones as a guide to help you gauge if your child is growing up healthy or if your child requires more support or intervention.  If you want to know the basics of child development and developmental milestones, check out Parent's Guide to Understanding Child Development.

To guide you as you watch your child's development in the areas of cognition, social and emotions, language, and physical, here are the developmental milestones broken down per age.

You may also download and print your copy of the Tiny Steps Developmental Milestones and Activities - Babies Checklist for your convenience.

Developmental Milestones and Recommended Activities

·       Two months old

During your baby's second month, you will notice that he/she will start to focus on you or another object.  You will be able to witness your baby's sweet smile and little coos.  At this time, here are the things you should expect from your little one.


-       Start to pay attention to the people's faces

-       Follow things with his/her eyes

-       Can recognize the parents and caregivers' faces

-       May start to act bored if the activity does not change

Social and Emotional

-       Start to smile at people

-       Begin to learn how to soothe or calm himself/herself.  May start to suck their fingers.

-       Start to look for parents


-       Start to coo or make gurgling sounds

-       Respond to sounds by turning his/her head towards the sound


-       Starts to hold his/her head up during tummy time

-       Has more control of his/her arms and legs

Recommended Activities

-     Establish a daily routine (e.g., feeding, sleeping) with your baby

-     Spend time to talk, cuddle, and play with your infant

-     Help your baby to self-soothe

-     Let your baby do tummy time

-     Read and sing to your child

-     Give your baby a gentle body massage

-     Give your baby a child-safe mirror so he/she can look at him/herself

-     Let your baby try to reach a toy held above his/her head

·       Four months old

At four months, your baby starts to show more interest in interacting with you and his/her surroundings.  You will notice that he/she is already reacting to the people and objects around him/her.  Here are some other developments you will see from your child.


-       Start to show and copy facial expressions

-       Respond and react to the attention he/she is getting

-       Try to stretch and reach out to objects such as toys using one hand

-       Follow movements of objects

-       Recognize people from a distance

Social and Emotional

-       Smile spontaneously

-       Enjoy playing and interacting with other people

-       May cry if playing stops


-       Start to babble with expression

-       Cry to express hunger, pain, discomfort, tiredness


-       Hold head more steadily even without any support

-       Pushes or bounces legs when his/her feet is on a hard surface

-       Starts to roll over during tummy time

-       Hold and shake toys or objects

-       Bring objects into the mouth

Recommended Activities

-       Spend time to talk, cuddle, and play with your infant

-       Continue with the established routine

-       Give age-appropriate toys such as rattles

-       Prepare a safe environment for your child to explore his surroundings and play with toys. Refer to Babyproofing Checklist for your Home for babyproofing tips.

-       Put toys near your baby, so he can try to reach for it or kick it

-       Read and sing to your child

-       Play Peek-A-Boo

-       Hold your child upright with his/her feet on the ground. 

·       Six months old


More exciting developments happen during your baby's sixth month.  He/she is more observant and curious.  Your baby gains more control over his/her movement and can already start with solid food. Here are other milestones you can expect during this time.


-       Observe his/her surroundings

-       Show curiosity and try to reach objects

-       Find partially hidden objects

-       Start to pass things from one hand to another

Social and Emotional

-       Know familiar faces

-       Enjoy playing and interacting with other people

-       Respond based on other people's reactions

-       Enjoy looking at himself/herself in the mirror


-       Responds through making sounds

-       Babbles with stringed vowels such as "ah," "eh," "oh."

-       React when you call his/her name


-       Can roll over in both direction

-       Can sit without support such as pillows

-       Starts to roll over during tummy time

-       Hold and shake toys or objects

-       Bring objects into the mouth

-       Eats solid food

Recommended Activities

-       Cuddle your baby

-       Play on the mat

-       Use reciprocal play

-       Read and sing to your child

-       Point and name objects to your baby

-       Hold your baby or put a pillow on his/her sides to support him/her while he/she is sitting

-       Encourage your baby to roll over and reach his/her toys 

·       Nine months old

Your baby becomes more mobile as he/she crawls and tries to stand up with support.  He/she learns and associates names with objects and people.  Here are some other exciting developments as your baby hits nine months.


-       Watch moving objects

-       Enjoy interactive games such as peek-a-boo

-       Looks at the pages while you read to him/her

-       Hit objects to make sounds

-       Move objects from one hand to another

Social and Emotional

-       May feel afraid when he/she sees strangers

-       Develop attachment to parents and caregivers. Baby may be clingy.

-       May have a favorite toy


-       Understand the meaning of "No."

-       Make a lot of different sounds

-       Copy sounds, facial expressions, and gestures of people around him

-       Uses finger to point at objects


-       Crawl

-       Can stand while holding onto something

-       Sits on his/her own

-       Picks up objects using thumb and index fingers

Recommended Activities

-       Continue with established routine (e.g., feeding, sleeping, playing)

-       Play interactive games

-       Prepare a safe environment for your child to play and explore

-       Point to objects or parts of the body and name it

-       Ask simple questions like "Where is your mouth?", "Where is the ball?"

-       Read and sing to your child

-       Let baby play with age-appropriate toys like stacking toys

If you see that your baby is not hitting the developmental milestones or you have any concerns, talk to your doctor immediately.  Early intervention is essential, so your child can catch up with his/her development.

We will look at the development milestone and recommended activities for a one-year-old in our next blog post.

Did you find this article informative and helpful?  We love to hear your opinion, please send them by writing in the comment section below. 

Tiny Steps

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