birth to 4 months info

Birth – 4 Month Developmental Milestones

Here is the research of where your infant developmental milestone. This reflects both the early years learning framework ( EYLF) milestones and the national quality standards (NQS).

NOTE: This is a guide. If you think you want to challenge your child further look at the 4 – 8 month developmental milestones. You know your child better than anyone so if you see that your child is a little delayed or has a red flag don’t be worried but ask your General Practitioner if you think there is something you are concerned about.

Emerging Motor Skills

  • startle reflex from loud sounds on unwrapped swaddle
  • turns head to the side when touched
  • lifts head during tummy time
  • moves all parts of the body
  • emerging sleeping and eating patterns
  • growing capacity to stay awake
  • sucking motion
  • seeks nipple
  • responds to gentle rocking, cuddling and touching
  • shuts eyes tight with bright light
  • by starts to reach to swipe for objects
  • begins to roll side to side
  • able to grasp objects in hand

Toys Ideas

  • play gym
  • baby einstein mirror
  • black and white picture cards
  • rattles
  • musical mobiles

Social & Emotional Skills

  • smiles selectively to mothers voice
  • laughs
  • cries when hungry
  • usually stops crying when held
  • shows excitement when about to be fed
  • bonding
  • may sleep most of the time
  • preoccupied by faces
  • moves head when hears the sounds of voices

Language Skills

  • cries to communicate
  • expresses need
  • could start to copy sounds
  • coos
  • gurgles
  • imitates adult tongue movements when being talked to
  • soothed by sounds or rhythm
  • makes throaty sounds

Cognitive Skills

  • looks toward sound
  • eyes track moving object briefly
  • looks at dark/light contrasts
  • learns through sensory experiences
  • repeats actions
  • Increased attention span

Red Flags

  • Cries a lot
  • isn’t responding to sounds
  • floppy movements
  • stiff movements
  • not making sounds
  • not responding to familiar faces
  • won’t feed as expected
  • is not showing interest or responding to play
  • arches back

This is a milestone guide from birth to 4 month old infants has been created using both assessments from the Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF) and the National Quality Standards (NQS). This information was developed in conjunction with the QLD Government Child and Youth physical and cognitive developmental milestones.

Written By Sarah Courtney


Department Of Education, Employment And Workplace Relations (2012). Developmental milestones: and the early years learning framework and the national quality standards. Community Child Care Cooperative LTD. Retrieved from

Queensland Government Child And Youth. (1990). Physical and cognitive developmental milestones. Retrieved from