What is a child development chart?


Quick Answer

A child development chart outlines how a normal child's growth should progress through different development areas with time. Development charts typically serve as rough guides only, and an individual child's progress can be slower in some areas of development and faster in some.

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Full Answer

Children develop in five main areas: physical, intellectual, language, emotional and social; these areas are sometimes abbreviated by the acronym PILES. Different charts focus on different periods of a child's life ranging from a few months to several years. Different charts also have varying information, although the variation is slight.

Examples of physical milestones that a normal child goes through from birth to the age of 3 months include making jerky arm movements and folding the hands into tight fists. In terms of language, a baby at this age pays close attention to sounds and looks at the person who is speaking. In terms of intellectual development, the child starts focusing on and following moving objects and people with his eyes. The child also responds to strong smells using facial expressions.

Although child development charts help parents understand what to expect from their child, they should share any queries they have about the child's development with their pediatrician.

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