A developmental assessment is designed to better understand a young child’s development and competencies in the areas of physical, language, intellectual, social and/or adaptive skills. The goal of a developmental assessment is to identify the learning environments and experiences that will most likely lead to the child reaching their full developmental potential.

Your child’s assessment will be individualized to your child’s chronological age and suspected challenge. You will be asked to spend time answering questionnaires, answering questions about your child’s growth, behavior, play and interactions with people and objects. Your child will also participate in activities geared to their developmental level to determine strengths and needs.

Developmental milestones are skills that are seen in infants and young children as they grow and develop. Rolling over, crawling, walking, talking, smiling, shifting eye gaze, pointing are all considered milestones. The milestones for each age range are different. As you watch your child grow you will quickly realize that every child develops at their own pace and thus the guidelines allow for variations in stages of development. At times, you may wonder if your child’s development is typical of children the same age.

You may wonder about:
• Why he/she is not talking,
• Why he/she doesn’t seem to enjoy simple games like peek-a-boo,
• Why is he/she stiff or floppy,
• Why does he/she not appear comfortable playing alongside other children,
• Why doesn’t he/she imitate words or actions,
• Why doesn’t he/she follow simple directions,
• Why doesn’t he/she understand the use of everyday objects,
• Why doesn’t he/she interact with people outside our family,
• Why doesn’t he/she jump, throw a ball or play make-believe,
• Why does he/she avoid eye contact?

A child may be showing signs of a developmental delay if skills are not achieved within the same time frame as other children of the same age. If you are concerned about your child’s development or others have mentioned concerns to you, you should speak to your child’s doctor. It may be helpful to review established lists of milestones and provide a list of skills you feel are not developing to your doctor.

The following websites contain milestones from birth to school age:

http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/actearly/milestones/index.html
http://www.babycenter.ca/baby/development
http://www.caringforkids.cps.ca/handouts/yourchildsdevelopment

DSM-5 diagnoses that may be identified include:

Global Developmental Delay Autism Spectrum Disorder
Communication Disorders Motor Disorders

If you remain concerned, please give SBSLG a call. We can help.