Infant Development

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by burrowstl
Last updated 7 years ago

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Infant Development

Copple, C., & Bredekamp, S. (2009). Developmentally Appropriate Practice in Early Childhood Programs Serving Children from Birth through Age 8. Washington, DC: National Association for the Education of Young Children.BabyCenter Medical Advisory Board. (2011). Milestones: What you can expect from birth to age 3. Retrieved from, P. (1991). Infant Development. Retrieved from:, Taylor Burrows, grant permission to freely publish this page.

"Security, exploration, and identity formation are all importnat developmental factors in relationships and learning throughout the first three years of life" (Copple, C., & Bredekamp, S., 2009).

Developmental Characteristics

Infant Development

Taylor Burrows

Images courtesy of a personal friend

Developmental Milestones

1-3 months: At this time, an infant’s hearing is fully developed; therefore, they may move their head towards sounds they recognize. During ‘tummy time’ infants may lift their heads and move them to the side. By three months, they begin to smile, mimic sounds and imitate facial expressions. Infants are able to track objects with their eyes and are slowly developing some fine motor skills. 4-7 months: Infants are developing the muscles and strength they need to start moving. They can roll over, sit up, and use their legs to support their own body weight when bouncing in adults arms. Infants are now able to see the world in color and recognize their own name. 8- 12 months: At this stage, infants have learned to crawl or scoot. Soon they will say their first word. Infants are learning to do things for themselves. According to BabyCenter, (2011) “your baby loves to be just like you by combing his own hair, drinking from a cup, and pretending to talk on the phone.” 13-18 months: During this time, infants are becoming toddlers. They will learn to walk, climb, and speak in phrases. These very mobile infants are true explores ready to figure out their own identity as they enter into the world of a toddler.

Young & Mobile Infants (birth to 18 months)

Young infants are born with individual needs and are vulnerable to the world. They need responsive adults who will make them feel safe and secure as they begin to learn about the world. According to Copple, C., & Bredekamp, S., (2009) “security is the prime motivation for young infants.” Infants are interested in languages and eager to participate in conversations and simple games. They enjoy being touched and become eager to move as they learn about their bodies. According to Copple, C., & Bredekamp, S., (2009) “Babies learn best when they are alert and calm.” Mobile infants are ready to explore the world. They are ready to move around and interact with adults and peers. Infants begin to develop feelings and strong emotions like love, fear, and anxiety. Infants develop characteristics in three basic areas: physical, social and emotional. According to Nuttall,(1991) “there is no perfect infant. Infants are human.” As they develop different characteristics, it is important to remember to embrace each infant’s individual differences and allow them to be who they are.

Reading with your infant!

"A strong, loving relationship with a trusted adult gives the mobile infant the secure base from which he can explore his world" Copple, C., & Bredekamp, S. (2009)


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