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: Reach/Grasp/Release

Age: 2-4 Months

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Reach: Begins visually directed reaching; keeps object and hand in view when reaching

Situations for Observation of Skill

Observe the infant on his back.

Elicitation Strategy

Hold a small interesting object a short distance above the infant and wait for him to reach for it.

Behavior Observed

The infant sees the object and reaches toward it. He watches his hand and the object. The infant grasps the object and pulls it toward his body.

Routines-based Intervention (Embedded Instruction)

Parents may want to put a rattle in the infant’s hand and shake it for them. Encourage parents to provide “just a little” challenge for the infant, by holding objects a short distance away. By holding objects in different orientations at different times, the infant learns to track objects and adjust his reach.

 North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 2015

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