The way your child learns, plays, and acts shows you important steps in development. All children grow and develop at their own rate. However, most follow a predictable skill path along the way. These skill paths are called developmental milestones; skills that most children can perform by a certain age. Refer to the checklist below to determine what milestones your child has completed by six months of age.

By six months most babies:


Fine Motor (skills that require balance and movement of small muscle groups)

_ Reach for and grasp a toy with both hands at once.

_ Pick up a small toy, holding it in the center of their hand with their fingers wrapped around it.

_ Try to pick up a Cheerio by using their thumb and all of their fingers in a raking motion.

_ Pick up a small toy with one hand.


Cognitive (memory, problem solving, thinking, and overall play)

_ When on their back, turn their head to look for a toy they have dropped.

_ Pass a toy back and forth between hands.

_ Bang toys up and down on the floor or table.



_ Play with sounds by using grunting, growling, or deep-toned sounds.

_ When you call them out of sight, they look in the direction of your voice.

_ Make sounds such as “ga”, “ba”, “da”, and “ka.”


_ Act differently around strangers (staring, frowning, crying).

_ Reach and pat their reflection in the mirror.

_ While on their back, put their feet in their mouth.

_ Try to get a toy out of reach (roll, pivot, or crawl).


Gross Motor

_ While on their tummy they straighten both arms and push their chest off the floor or bed.

_ Roll from back to tummy, getting both hands out from under themselves.

_ Lean on their hands for support when sitting or sit independently.

_ Hold their hands for balance, they are able to support their own weight on their feet.



_ Gum and swallow a cracker.

_ Pick up a spoon using the handle.

_ Begin to finger feed themselves.


Talk to your doctor or contact an early intervention program in your community if you notice any of the following signs of a possible developmental delay in your child of six months:

_ Doesn’t try to get things that are in reach.

_ Doesn’t respond to sounds around them.

_ Has trouble or doesn’t bring things to their mouth.

_ Doesn’t roll over in either direction (back to tummy or tummy to back).

_ Doesn’t laugh or make squealing sounds.

_ Seems very stiff with tight muscles or very floppy like a rag doll.

ASQ. Ages and Stages Questionnaires, Third Edition (ASQ – 3)

CDD. Centers for Disease Control <>

D’Eugenio, Diane and Rogers, Sally J. Early Intervention Developmental Profile (EIDP). 1981. University of Michigan.

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