Friday, June 29, 2012

Cognitive Milestones (Mental Development)

This is the first post in a 4 part series on child development.  I like knowing what milestones my child needs to be doing, so that I may help guide him in that area. For example, I made a picture book of photographs for my toddler to help him identify family members. I also like to know why I am doing something. We all play peek a boo with babies, but did you know that it was to help your baby anticipate events? I thought I was just doing it to make him laugh. Furthermore,  This information is taken into consideration when I write my Mommy Lesson Plans.

I have a child with Asperger's Syndrome. When he didn't meet milestones, I started to freak out. I also freaked out with child number two who is not on the spectrum. Now, I have a  toddler, and am starting to freak out again. I have to keep reminding myself, that this mild hysteria is neither good for myself or my kids. So, please learn from me and take this as a guideline only. Don't obsess.

0-6 Months
Listens attentively to sounds and voices (by 1 month)
Cries deliberately for assistance (by 1 month)
Coordinates eye movements (by 2 months)
Discovers hands and feet as extension of self (by 3 months)
Likes to repeat enjoyable acts (by 4 months)
Recognizes and responds to name (by 5 months)
Studies objects intently (by 6 months)

6-12 Months
Anticipates events (by 7 months)
Finds hidden objects (by 10 months)
Can point to body parts
Puts nesting toys together correctly
Develops expectations about familiar events
Waves bye-bye

12-18 Months
Identifies family members in photographs
Enjoys cause and effect relationship
Is able to make choices between clear alternatives
Begins to solve problems
Remembers more

18-24 Months
Sorts shapes and colors
Mimics adult behavior
Points to and names objects
Refers to self by name
Learns by helping
Learns concepts such as size, shape and weight as he/she moves and plays with objects in the environment.

2-3 Years
Comprehends size
Beginning to understand time sequences (e.g. before lunch)
Matches shapes and colors
Counts and manipulates objects
Is beginning to think about consequences
Is able to concentrate for longer periods of time

4-5 Years
Comprehends special concepts (e.g. around, in front, high, next to)
Rote counts up to 20
Can complete a 6-8 piece puzzle
Begins to understand time concepts
Understands simple math concepts
Recalls main details of a story

6-10 Years
Retains knowledge about subjects they like
Develop reading and writing skills
Understands money concepts (6 years)
Understands complicated time concepts (7/8 years)
Begins to research information and complete projects (10 years)
Needs reduced stress situations

For more information go to
ACT • Quality Professional Development for Childhood Care and Education Professionals.

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