North Carolina Early Learning and Development Progressions: Birth to Five

Skills for ages 4-6 Months

Click on a skill below for information about observing the skill, elicting the skill, and interventions related to the skill.
You may also click here to return to the main page.

Health and Physical Development

Supine: May bring feet to mouth and suck on toes

Sits unsupported momentarily; may extend arms forward to catch self or prop on arms

Takes full weight on legs when supported under the arms; bounces up and down

Propels self on tummy with legs, steers with arms, goes backward or forward

Supine: May lift head and shoulders

Supine: Kicks feet

Prone: Increased head, hip and trunk control allows twisting and turning in all directions

Prone: Bears weight on extended arms, may push backward

Prone: When suspended in prone, lifts and maintains head vertically

Moves head freely

Supine: Initially both hands reach, elbows extended, hands open - one hand grasps other joins in midline; later, one arm fully extends with wrist straight and fingers extended - may over reach

Grasp: Palmer grasp, with fingers on top surface of object, object pressed into palm; later, fingers on far side of object press it against the thumb and side of palm

Hand carries object to mouth to suck both object and hand

Prone: Initially, hands slide forward, corralling object; later, reaches with one arm while weight is on other forearm

Release: Two-stage transfer - one hand holds object, second hand joins hold, first hand releases

Shakes objects, first with shoulder, then with shoulder and elbow

Retains one object in each hand

Bangs object on table

Opens mouth adaptively; closes lips

Becomes more active and excited while being dressed

Develops a suck-swallow pattern

Gums solid food

Swallows some thicker pureed foods

Ejects food with tongue

 North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 2015

©2015 by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, visit