|Examples of social and emotional developmental milestones
|Birth to 2 Months
|May briefly calm himself (may bring hands to mouth and suck on hand). Tries to make eye contact with caregiver. Begins to smile at people.
|May smile spontaneously, especially at people. Likes interacting with people and might cry when the interaction stops. Copies some movements and facial expressions, like smiling or frowning.
|Reacts positively to familiar faces and begins to be wary of strangers. Likes to play with others, especially parents and other caregivers. Responds to own name.
|May show early signs of separation anxiety and may cry more often when separated from caregiver and be clingy with familiar adults. May become attached to specific toys or other comfort items. Understands “no.” Copies sounds and gestures of others.
|Examples of social and emotional milestones
|May show fear in new situations. Repeats sounds or actions to get attention. May show signs of independence and resist a caregiver’s attempt to help. Begins to follow simple directions.
|May need help coping with temper tantrums. May begin to explore alone but with parent close by. Engages in simple pretend or modeling behavior, such as feeding a doll or talking on the phone. Demonstrates joint attention; for example, the child points to an airplane in the sky and looks at caregiver to make sure the caregiver sees it too.
|Copies others, especially adults and older children. Shows more and more independence and may show defiant behavior. Mainly plays alongside other children (parallel play) but is beginning to include other children in play. Follows simple instructions.
|May start to understand the idea of “mine” and “his” or “hers.” May feel uneasy or anxious with major changes in routine. May begin to learn how to take turns in games and follows directions with 2-3 steps. Names a friend and may show concern for a friend who is sad or upset.
|Cooperates with other children and may prefer to play with other children than by herself. Often cannot tell what is real and what is make-believe. Enjoys new things and activities.
|May want to please caregivers and peers. Is aware of gender. May start recognizing what is real and what is make-believe.
|Measure his performance against others. Continue to develop her social skills by playing with other children in a variety of situations. Be able to communicate with others without adult help. Start to feel sensitive about how other children feel about him.