Developmental Milestones in Infants and Toddlers

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Birth to 12 Months

The period of the child’s development from his birth until the age of one year is one of the most crucial stages. Some of the researchers claim that the specialists can predict the IQ level of a personality by investigating the attitudes and the methods of communication of children (Peyre, Charkaluk, Forhan, Heude, & Ramus, 2017). The scientists maintain that speech development is a significant factor that has to be taken into consideration as it is a way to understand the potential capacities of a baby (Peyre et al., 2017). During this period, the examination of the communicational particularities is essential for controlling the process of upbringing. The ways of interaction with the relatives show the emotional and cognitive capacities of a child.

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Concerning physical activity, a child should be able to keep his head at the age of two months and move across the bed at the age of six months. A baby can interact with people by smiling and pronouncing some sounds in order to attract attention. It is crucial to highlight that at the final stages, around the age of one year, a child should be capable of asking for help, indicating his desire to talk with the aid of syllables. Physical activity is developed in a noticeable way at one year – a baby can take a toy and play with it or hold the bottle and drink.

In the case of some deviations, it is advisable to interact more with a child. For example, if his capacity to walk formats in a slow way, it is necessary to integrate this process into a simple game like chasing. The kid would be more excited by the process, and the efforts would be more efficient. Concerning emotional and cognitive deviations, it is advisable to organize consultations with healthcare specialists in order to exclude the option of mental diseases. Communication and establishing trusting relationships with a child would be beneficial for his overall development during this period and reduce the risk of diverse complications.

13 to 24 Months

At the moment, when a child reaches the age of one year, he is able to pronounce several simple words, find the required items in the room, sit, and stay without any help. Communicational skills help a human define different personalities and react according to their behavior patterns. Emotional capacities can be identified by the ability to verify pleasant and uncomfortable actions and expressing the following reaction – laughter, cry, and others. The process of development during the second year of life can be separated into four categories. During the first one, the most important physical activity is walking. The child investigates the space around him and tries to overcome long distances from one wall to another. Cognitive capacities are indicated by the desire to learn more about the world he lives in. He might try to ask some questions or point on unknown subjects. Emotional skills develop gradually during the year and include the possibility to interact in diverse ways with different people. The child begins to act like adults and repeat the same actions, phrases, or behavior patterns.

At the final stages during this period, the physical activity of a child increases dramatically. He is able to climb on a staircase, walk, and run without any help. His cognitive and social capacities allow him to make friends with other children. It is crucial to mention that, at this moment starts the process of the character formation. He can communicate with adults: ask for help, play the games together, create questions about the world around him. It is necessary to strictly control the nutrition system at this stage as it significantly affects the well-being of a child. Researchers point out that malnutrition and unhealthy diets may lead to severe health problems in the future (Drennen et al., 2019). Interaction with a child is vital for his development; however, it is recommended to give a child more space for independent decisions and communication with his peers (Valla, Birkeland, Hofoss, & Slinning, 2017). It would be advantageous for reducing the risk of developmental problems in the grown-up period.

25 to 36 Months

Emotional development is a prevalent part of this period, as the majority of basic physical skills are already implemented in the life of a child. The kid begins to investigate his own emotions and tries to compare it to the behavior of both his peers and adult relatives. It is crucial to help him during this process by explaining the reasons and causes of specific feelings like anger, cruelty, or envy. What is more, analyzing positive emotions is also important as it is beneficial for a child when he wants to understand the link between particular events and his well-being. Language and cognitive skills are correlated at this moment as the person begins to talk about the things that he cannot see or touch in a specific situation. It means that the process of abstract mental development is functioning in the correct way.

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Physical activity is also interlinked with cognitive capacitates: a child understands the schedule of the day and follows it. He is able to use the toilet and eat without the help of the parents. He can see the dangerous place and analyze where is the risk to follow down. It is advantageous for minimizing the risk of traumas and injuries. During this period, it is essential to keep the balance between controlling a child and giving him freedom of action. In the case of deviations, it is necessary to combine two approaches: to work with a child according to the requirements of the specialists and, at the same time, let him spend more time with his friends. At this stage, socialization is crucial for a young personality and may help cope with diverse problems in communicational or emotional sphere.

37 to 48 Months

At the age of three years, the child begins to ask many questions in order to understand the specificity of the world’s functions. His curiosity affects other aspects of his development, for example, he investigates his physical possibilities. He gets acquainted with the notion of competitiveness; it motivates him to perform better in diverse spheres. What is more, emotional and cognitive capacities are strongly correlated with the particularities of communication with parents and friends. A child gets experience and knowledge of the world not only by his own empirical tests and experiments but also by conversations with more educated people. In case of difficulties and problems with the kid’s development, it is advisable to start with an analysis of his nutrition as it significantly affects the formation of the nervous system (Drennen et al., 2019). It would also be advantageous to take enrichment courses that would support the mental progress of a child.


Drennen, C. R., Coleman, S. M., de Cuba, S. E., Frank, D. A., Chilton, M., Cook, J. T.,… Black, M. M. (2019). Food insecurity, health, and development in children under age four years. Pediatrics, 144(4), Web.

Peyre, H., Charkaluk, M. L., Forhan, A., Heude, B., & Ramus, F. (2017). Do developmental milestones at 4, 8, 12 and 24 months predict IQ at 5–6 years old? Results of the EDEN mother–child cohort. European Journal of Paediatric Neurology, 21(2), 272–279.

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Valla, L., Birkeland, M. S., Hofoss, D., & Slinning, K. (2017). Developmental pathways in infants from 4 to 24 months. Child: Care, Health and Development, 43(4), 546–555.

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"Developmental Milestones in Infants and Toddlers." PsychologyWriting, 26 May 2022,


PsychologyWriting. (2022) 'Developmental Milestones in Infants and Toddlers'. 26 May.


PsychologyWriting. 2022. "Developmental Milestones in Infants and Toddlers." May 26, 2022.

1. PsychologyWriting. "Developmental Milestones in Infants and Toddlers." May 26, 2022.


PsychologyWriting. "Developmental Milestones in Infants and Toddlers." May 26, 2022.