At around three months of age, your child will begin to discover his hands and all the exciting things they can be used for. He will start to grab for things and investigate them by hand. From the age of three months onwards, he will also put everything in his mouth. Fine motor skills are absent and the child will use the entire hand as a shovel.
Later, at around 5-7 months of age, your child will learn to sit alone without support for some time. They will then reach for toys without thinking about which hand they use. Eventually the child will begin to practice using the pincer grip, picking up objects between thumb and forefinger, instead of "digging" it up with the whole hand.
Up until now, your child has been able to pick things up, but has not mustered the ability to consciously let them go again. The next phase is learning to let go and this becomes fun! Your child will quite instinctively throw everything he or she comes close to. This is good training of motor skills and hand eye co-ordination. The child will also increasingly be able to move around either by crawling or shuffling. It's important to recognise that crawling in itself is not the milestone, but getting to where they want to go. So whether your child shuffles on his bottom or throws himself forward in a type of commando crawl, all of these are normal and acceptable ways of meeting this milestone.
As the child gets more and more control, coordination between hand and eyes improves. Your little one can now place a few bricks or build cups on top of each other. And they find it really fun to knock it down... over and over again!
There is great variation in when children begin to stand up and try to take the first step. Some children have walked before they have blown out the candles on their first birthday cake. For others, it takes a little longer. But for most it will happen at some point between 12 and 18 months of age.
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