Getting to know your child’s milestones is as simple as playing with your child.

Skills such as taking a first step, smiling for the first time, and waving “hi” are called developmental milestones. As children grow, they reach milestones in how they play, learn, speak, act, and move. While all children grow and change at their own rate, experts on child development target a window of time when a child may reach each milestone.

To review milestones below, click on the age you want to learn more about.

5 Years

  • Uses four and five word sentences
  • Uses past-tense words for something that already happened, i.e. we walked
  • Uses comparison words, i.e. a car is big, but a bus is bigger
Gross Motor
  • Walks on tiptoes for 15 feet (about length of large car)
  • Hops forward on one foot for a distance of four to six feet
  • Skips using alternating feet
Fine Motor
  • Traces a line without going off the line more than two times
  • Copies triangles and other shapes
  • Copies letters in first name
Problem Solving
  • Counts to fifteen
  • Gives opposites, i.e. a rock is hard, and a pillow is _____ (soft)
  • Names at least four letters in first name
Personal Social
  • Uses toilet by self (goes to bathroom, sits on toilet, wipes, flushes, washes hands)
  • Takes turns and shares with other children
Talk to Doctor If
  • Doesn’t show wide range of emotions
  • Shows extreme behavior (unusually fearful, aggressive, shy or sad)
  • Easily distracted, has trouble focusing on one activity for more than five minutes
  • Can’t tell what’s real and what’s make-believe
  • Doesn’t talk about daily activities or experiences
  • Doesn’t draw pictures
  • Loses skills once able to do

Learn more with a Developmental Screening

To get a more in-depth picture of how your child is developing, we invite you to take a free developmental screening.

Making Meaning from a Screening

After you complete the screening, you may have questions. One in six children have developmental concerns that would benefit from follow up. Research has shown that the sooner the developmental services are started, the better the outcome. There are many services that can support a child’s development, including speech therapy, physical therapy, and developmentally appropriate social activities.

Talking with their health care provider about your concerns can help you determine the best next steps. Your child’s daycare or preschool can also be a partner in supporting your child’s development.

At any time in the process, Help Me Grow is here to walk you through the screening results and to answer your questions.

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