Stages of Child Development

Understanding the stages of child development will help you select kids sports activities and other fun games to play now that your kids will enjoy!

Whether it’s baby activities, kindergarten activities, or free kid games for older children, you need to make sure you choose a game that is developmentally appropriate for each child.

Fun preschool activities will be too advanced for your newborn, and most toddlers activities will be boring for older elementary kids.

stages of child development

These are not hard, fast markers but they provide good milestones in your child’s development.

It is my goal with our Recipes for Play! that we help you in the process of choosing the perfect level of activity. At the top of each game, we list the targeted general age group.

Just keep in mind that within the same age groups there will be kids at various developmental levels.

That’s why there is often a need to modify a game:

  • Perhaps you have a group of kids playing that vary in age, and you want to help level the playing field
  • Maybe one of your participants has an injury or physical handicap
  • Maybe someone in your group is developmentally behind

Whatever the case, in addition to the basic rules for each game we include ideas for making the games more challenging along with modifications to ensure a greater opportunity for success for everyone.

I am a big believer in the importance of physical activity and play for kids!

Not only are kids sports activities fun, but they are great for overall fitness and they contributes to a child’s overall healthy growth and development.

In terms of motor development, the child development stages are broken down into 4 different phases. Each phase is characterized by particular kinds of movements.


Stages of Child Development

  • Birth-6 months – Reflexive & Spontaneous Movements
  • 6 months-2 years – Rudimentary Movements
  • 2-6 years – Fundamental Movements
  • 6-12 years – Sport Skills

Learn more about these stages of motor development.

As children grow and mature, there are certain child development milestones that are typically reached each year. These milestones are skills that children demonstrate in the gross motor, fine motor, language, cognitive, social, and emotional domains.

But please remember, these are only general guidelines. Your child will NOT fit exactly within these parameters.

CHILD DEVELOPMENT MILESTONES

Birth-1 year
1-2 years
2-3 years
3-4 years
4-5 years
5-6 years

Learn more about the impact of play on the stages of child development.

Read more about child growth and develoment and its implications for sports activity.

Browse our list of free kid games to find developmentally appropriate games for your kids!




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