Every child is different and develops at his or her own pace, but most children reach major milestones within a certain range of time. Parents should learn the milestones, but recognise that their child might develop some skills earlier and some later than other children of the same age.
To give you an idea of milestones, have a look at the NHS's birth to five timeline.
If your baby was born early
If your baby was born early, most paediatricians recommend using an "adjusted age" to determine this range. Adjusted age helps level the playing field by taking into account just how early your baby was born.
When you use an adjusted age, the range of normal gets shifted. For example, while most full-term babies will sit up between four and seven months, a baby born two months early can be expected to this between six and nine months.
To find your child's adjusted age, count the number of weeks between their birth date and their due date, and subtract that amount of time from their current age.
Developing healthy brains
Loving, positive and nurturing relationships help children and young people develop the healthy brains they need for future life challenges.
In fact, simply playing, talking and singing with your little one are not just fun, they are essential. Why? Because these simple activities in the first few years of life are key to your child developing a healthy and resilient brain architecture that will help them thrive. Find out more about the science behind brain development.
Children don't come with a manual and it's hard to know what is and isn't normal. If you are worried or simply just want to check, make the first step and talk to one of our local Family Support workers to see how we can help. Pop into one of our family centres, email email@example.com or phone 020 8753 6070.