Developmental Expectations

Remember ... All children grow, learn and develop at their own pace. Use this list as a general information guide only.

Approaches Toward Learning

Boy playing guitar
  • Is curious and confident in ability to learn.
  • Enjoys exploration and discovery through play.
  • Asks questions to find out more about an interest.
  • Expresses self creatively through music, movement, and art.
  • Takes initiative when appropriate.
  • Pays attention to task for short period of time (approximately 15 minutes).
  • Persists with tasks even when difficult.

Social and Emotional Development

Young girl getting her face painted at a fair
  • Plays cooperatively and participates appropriately in a group.
  • Follows basic rules, routines and adapts to small changes.
  • Demonstrates some degree of independence and can separate from parents.
  • Works to solve conflict and seeks adult help when needed.
  • Respects people and property.
  • Begins to identify and express own feelings appropriately.
  • Begins to understand other’s feelings and intentions.
  • Forms close relationships with children and familiar adults.

Language Development

Father reading to daughter
  • Knows many vocabulary words in own language.
  • Uses sentences of several words.
  • Speech is understandable to unfamiliar adults.
  • Asks and answers when, where, why and how questions.
  • Follows 1, 2, 3 step directions.
  • Recognizes rhyming words and similar sounds.
  • Understands that words can be spoken and written.
  • Recognizes familiar alphabet letters (knows letters of own name).
  • Is interested in books/stories and can retell a story when read aloud.
  • Can tell about an experience.

Health and Physical Development

Child eating on his own
  • Has had vision/hearing screened.
  • Has had all required immunizations.
  • Receives medical care when sick.
  • Receives dental check-ups regularly.
  • Eats a balanced diet and gets eight to ten hours of sleep at night.
  • Can run, jump, climb, swing and throw balls.
  • Demonstrates self-help skills such as independent use of toilet, eat unassisted, snap, button, zip or belt own clothes, blow nose, cover sneeze, wash hands, etc.
  • Holds scissors appropriately and cuts.

Cognition and General Knowledge

Boy playing with calculator
  • Identifies self with first and last name.
  • Knows basic colors.
  • Has awareness of self and family.
  • Draws picture of self.
  • Understands that actions have consequences.
  • Understands simple science concepts.
  • Demonstrates good problem-solving skills.
  • Understands 1-1 correspondence in counting.
  • Names some numbers and rote counts to 10.
  • Names some shapes (circle, square, triangle, rectangle).
  • Can informally measure things (which is longer?).
  • Understands spatial concepts (up and down).

Adapted from Foundations: Early Learning Standards