Let's look at the main developmental milestones for birth to 4 months old.
Developmental Milestones: 0 - 4 months
As they grow from being tiny helpless babies unable to lift their own head, you’ll see changes in them almost daily, right from birth.
From around 0-4 months, these are the milestones you should expect to see:
- From just a few weeks old, they'll be able to lift up their head and chest a little when on their tummy and move their whole body as they squirm and wiggle around.
- By two months, they can start to recognize familiar faces at a distance (as their vision improves) and will follow moving objects with their eyes and by three months will turn their head toward movement.
- Your baby will start to react to the sights and sounds around them and will turn their head towards familiar voices and follow you with their eyes.
- They’ll able to move their arms together and apart and bring their hands to their mouth, and possibly suck on their own hands or fingers to self-soothe.
- They can grab objects that are placed in their hand and are starting to reach out at objects dangling in front of them.
- They’ll react to loud noises possibly with a cry or by arching their back or flailing their arms, and will shut their eyes in bright lights.
- They’ll express their disappointment, hunger, boredom, and frustration in the only way they know how - by crying – their main form of communication (it generally peaks at around 2 weeks and peters out at around 4 months) but you’ll also start to hear them coo and gurgle as they start to copy and mimic your sounds.
- They'll recognize when they’re about to be fed (around 3 months old)!
- At around 4 months, they’ll start to smile and laugh spontaneously, and will respond to affection.
- By around 4 months, you’ll notice them lifting their head and shoulders off the floor when laying on their front.
- It’s normal for them to sleep most of the time as their body is going through so much rapid growth and development.
- They like to be held and cuddled and talked to and will recognize and enjoy the sound of familiar voices.
The Best Activities for Kids: Birth to 4 months old
Keep It Simple
Shower your baby with attention. Give him cuddles and gentle tickles. Talk, and sing to him and show him big smiles. Offer him encouragement for all his new developments. Pick up objects and hand them to him and play simple games like peek-a-boo or shake a rattle. Don’t forget to reciprocate when he smiles at you and offer him lots of eye contact!
He’ll love hearing new sounds so play him music and watch as your voice and or low rhythmic sounds soothe him.
Baby Play Station
Set up her baby play station with easy to reach toys that require your baby to look down toward the chest, belly or feet to help develop her “neck flexion” (i.e. tucking her chin toward her chest – which will be necessary for rolling over). You can also hang toys over her belly and feet to motivate her to start kicking her legs and bringing her hands together.
Other Milestones you might want to look at:
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 4 to 8 months old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 8 to 12 months old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 12 to 18 months old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 18 months to 2 years old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 2 to 3 years old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 3 to 4 years old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 4 to 5 years old
DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES: 5 to 6 years old