Normal social Developmental milestones : Social Development

Normal social Developmental milestones


Knowing what to expect as your child grows can reassure you that your child is on track with his peers or alert you to potential concerns. Below are some milestones to watch for your 5-year-old.

By Joyce Destefanis, M.A. , Nancy Firchow, M.L.S.

Since birth, you've watched your child grow and develop. You've noted his height and weight, when he crawled, stood, and walked, even when he spoke his first words - and perhaps compared all of these milestones of his infant and toddler years to the "norms." The preschool and early school years are also full of changes. From three to five your child's motor skills, language, thinking, and social development change dramatically.

Knowing what to expect as your child grows can reassure you that your child is on track with his peers or alert you to potential concerns. Below are some milestones to watch for.

Motor Development: Gross Motor Skills

  • Runs in an adult manner
  • Walks on tiptoe, broad jumps
  • Walks on a balance beam
  • Skates and jumps rope

Motor Development: Fine Motor Skills

  • Hand preference is established
  • Laces (but cannot tie) shoes
  • Grasps pencil like an adult
  • Colors within lines
  • Cuts and pastes simple shapes

Language and Thinking Development

  • Speaks fluently; correctly uses plurals, pronouns, tenses
  • Very interested in words and language; seeks knowledge
  • Understands and names opposites
  • Uses complex language
  • Still confuses fantasy and reality at times
  • Thinking is still naïve; doesn't use adult logic

Social and Emotional Development

  • Distinguishes right from wrong, honest from dishonest, but does not recognize intent
  • Plays make-believe and dresses up
  • Mimics adults and seeks praise
  • Seeks to play rather than be alone; friends are important
  • Plays with both boys and girls but prefers the same sex
  • Wants to conform; may criticize those who do not

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