North Carolina Early Learning and Development Progressions: Birth to Five

Domain: NC Foundations for Early Learning: Health and Physical Development (HPD)

Subdomain: Motor Development

Goal: Children develop small muscle control and hand-eye coordination to manipulate objects and work with tools.

Skill Progression: Arm movements

Age: 4-6 Months

Click here to go to all skills for ages 4-6 Months.

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

Situations for Observation of Skill

Observe the infant lying on his back.

Elicitation Strategy

Supine: The adult holds an object of interest within reach above the infant.

Behavior Observed

In the early stage of this age range, the infant reaches with both arms and hands. The infant grasps the object with one hand and holds it with both hands. As the infant matures, he is able to reach with one arm and hand. The fingers extend in anticipation of grasping the object.

Routines-based Intervention (Embedded Instruction)

Encourage early childhood educators and parents to play with infants in many positions, so the infant discovers how different patterns affect vision and reaching. Early childhood educators and parents can place infants in side-lying, sitting, on the back, and on the stomach for different experiences. Use familiar objects, so the child comes to anticipate the size and weight of each object. After a time, introduce a new object to explore.

 North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 2015

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