Early Childhood Intervention occurs at the time when your child is developing most rapidly when the brain and body are growing and developing. The foundations for many skill sets are laid down in the early years from birth to age five, with learning and development continuing throughout our lives but at a slower rate.
Experience has shown that starting early to encourage learning and development has positive effects in helping children to participate in school, friendships and recreation opportunities and to have fewer problems in the future.
For children with a disability and/or developmental delay, getting the support they need as early as possible will give them the best chance of minimising the long-term effects of the disability or the delay and will enable them the opportunity to fulfil their potential.
According to the Raising Children Network
development is the term used to describe the changes in your child’s physical growth, as well as their ability to learn the social, emotional, behaviour, thinking and communication skills they need for life. All of these areas are linked, and each depends on and influences the others.
‘Ages and Stages’ outline the significant periods of development that every child goes through. Children develop skills in five main areas, known as domains. These domains are:
- Social and Emotional Development
- Speech and Language
- Fine Motor Skills
- Gross Motor Skills
Each of these areas can be broken down into developmental milestones. These milestones are a general list of the things most children can do by a certain age. Whilst it is important to remember that all children develop differently, you can use this list as a tool to check if your child is meeting typical milestones for their age. How your child plays, learns, speaks, acts and moves can provide you with important clues about your child’s development.
Below are you will find helpful resources and links to help you understand what generally happens at each of the various stages of a child’s life during their early years.