The progression in abilities from first motor reflexes to intentional movement, from rolling to sitting to crawling, walking, running, jumping, and more. This also includes fine motor skills, the ability to control the small muscles in the hands and fingers to pinch clay, roll dough, and hold tools to make marks.

These Milestones from the CDC offer some clues to a child’s development:


2 Month Physical Milestones:

Open hands briefly; holds head up when on tummy; moves both arms and legs


4 Month Physical Milestones:

Holds head steady without support when being held; holds a toy when it is put in their hand; uses their arm to swing at toys; brings hand to mouth; pushes onto elbows/forearms when on tummy


6 Month Physical Milestones:

Rolls from tummy to back; pushes up with straight arms when on tummy; leans on hands to support self while sitting


9 Month Milestones:

Gets into a sitting position by themself; moves things from one hand to the other; uses fingers to “rake” food towards themself; sits without support


12 Month Milestones:

Pulls up to stand; walks while holding furniture; drinks from a cup without a lid, held by an adult; picks things up between thumb and pointer finger, like small pieces of food


15 Month Milestones:

Take a few steps independently; uses fingers to feed self some food


18 Month Milestones:

Walks without holding on to anyone or anything; scribbles; drinks from a cup without a lid and may spill sometimes; feeds self with fingers; tries to use a spoon; climbs on and off a couch or chair without help


2-Year-Old Milestones:

Kicks a ball; runs; walks (not climbs) up a few stairs with or without help; eats with a spoon


30 Month Milestones:

Uses hands to twist things, like unscrewing a jar or opening a doorknob; takes off some clothing independently, like loose pants or a jacket; jumps off the ground with both feet; turns book pages one at a time when being read to


3-Year-Old Milestones:

Strings items together, like large beads or macaroni; puts on some clothes independently, like loose pants or a jacket; uses a fork


4-Year-Old Milestones:

Catches a large ball most of the time; serves self some food or water, with adult supervision; unbuttons some buttons; holds crayons or pencil between fingers and thumb (not in fist)


5-Year-Old Milestones:

Buttons some buttons; hops on one foot