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Growth & Development


Healthy Child Development

There are several stages of healthy hearing development that are marked by key abilities.  

0-3 months

  • Startles, cries or wakens to loud sounds

  • Moves head, eyes, arms and legs in response to a noise or voice

  • Smiles when spoken to, or calms down; appears to listen to sounds and talking

4-6 months

  • Responds to changes in your voice tone

  • Looks around to determine where new sounds are coming from

  • Responds to music and people’s voices

  • Begins to make speech-like sounds e.g., buh, ma, boo

6-9 months

  • Turns or looks up when his name is called Responds to the word “no”

  • Listens when spoken to

  • Knows common words like “cup”, “shoe”, “mom”

9-12 months

  • Responds to requests such as “Want more?” “Come here.” “ Where’s the ball?”

  • Babbles sounds in a series e.g., bababa, dadada, mememe

  • Says first word

12 months -2 years

  • Turns toward you when you call their name from behind

  • Follows simple commands

  • Tries to ‘talk’ by pointing, reaching and making noises

  • Knows sounds like a closing door and a ringing phone

  • Listens to simple stories, rhymes, and sings

  • Imitates sounds and words

2-3 years

  • Listens to a simple story

  • Follows two requests (e.g., Get the ball and put it on the table.)

  • Learns new words every week

3-4 years

  • Hears you when you call from another room

  • Listens to the television at the same loudness as the rest of the family

  • Answers simple questions

  • Speaks clearly enough to be understood most of the time by family

4-5 years

  • Pays attention to a story and answers simple questions

  • Hears and understands most of what is said at home and school

  • Family, teachers, child care providers, and others think he hears fine

  • Speaks clearly enough to be understood most of the time by anyone

... If a child is missing one or more of these expected age outcomes, consider this a red flag

If a child is experiencing any of the following, consider this a red flag:

► Early babbling stops

► Ear pulling (with fever or crankiness)

► Does not respond when called

► Draining ears; a lot of colds and ear infections

► Loud talking

These Practitioners and Agencies may be able to help



Having concerns about a child's development?

Having difficulty coping? Need some advice?

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