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Is Your Baby on Track?

Check WebMD's timeline of childhood milestones and learn the signs of developmental delays.

How Parents Can Help

The experts we spoke with suggest the following tips for encouraging your child's development:

Gross Motor Skills

  • Place infants on their tummies while awake to develop neck and back muscles
  • Create a safe home environment and put babies on the floor to explore
  • Give older children time outside where they can run and jump

Fine Motor Skills

  • Provide toys with different textures that encourage babies to explore with their fingers
  • Provide age-appropriate puzzles, blocks, paper, and crayons
  • Encourage older babies to feed themselves

Language Skills

  • Play music for newborns to stimulate hearing
  • Talk to your child
  • Read to your child
  • Name objects as you point to pictures in a book

Social Interaction

  • Laugh and smile with your baby
  • Limit television and play with your child

"Social interaction is more important than we realized in the past," Yeargin-Allsopp tells WebMD. "Don't leave children off by themselves. Being engaged with your child on a daily basis is very important."

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Reviewed on May 12, 2008

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