Developmental Red Flags
By 18-24 Months
- No walking (by 18 months)
- Abnormal gait or toe walking
- Skills regressing
- Constant drooling/difficult eating
Thankfully, there are many ways to deal with delays in child
development and behaviors.
These include in-home services, outpatient (you take your child
to a clinic), inpatient (following injury or surgery) and school
based services. Which type of therapy should you choose?
Visit our Therapy
Options area to learn more.
Ask a Therapist
We understand developmental milestones and the challenges of
Special Needs children. We spend a great deal of time with
families understanding the inner workings of childhood routines
and interactions. Ask us about your child today!
Ask a Therapist
Intervention Support contacts in your State. If you have a
question or comment for us, please visit our
From Our Readers
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Patricia in Brooklyn, NY
Gross Motor Skills for Toddlers:
Most 18 month olds can:
- Walk alone
- Walk downstairs holding rail, one step at a time
- Run in a hurried walk
- Walk into a large ball to kick
- Throw underhand in sitting
- Pull toy behind while walking
- Stand on one leg with help
Most two-year-olds can:
- Walk alone
- Walk backwards
- Lean over to pick up something without falling
- Pull and push toys
- Sit down in a small chair
- Walk up and down stairs, holding your hand
- Dance to music
- Run fairly well
- Throw a ball into a box
- Kick a ball forward
- Walk downstairs with one hand held
- Squat in play and begin to jump in place
Parenting Tips for Gross Motor Skills:
Suggested play to help a baby between 12 and 24 months develop gross
- When your baby is steady on its feet, pushing a stroller can be more
fun than riding in one. Let it push the stroller in a safe spot. Your
child will feel so strong and powerful pushing it all by itself.
- Rocking chairs delight this age group. If you don't have a rocking
horse or chair, let your baby use your body to rock back and forth. Sit
across from each other and sing "Row, Row, Row Your Boat" while you're
both gently pushing and pulling each other back and forth.
- Bring out the balls. Rolling a beach ball back and forth is a great
inside activity. Between 16 and 20 months is a good time to show your
child how to kick a ball.
- Have a dance party. Clapping hands, stomping feet to the beat and
twisting and turning are fun ways to strengthen muscles. Vary the music,
wave around scarves and giggle!
- Discover playgrounds. This is the time to introduce swings. Make
sure to use the seat belt, then gently push your child. Remember to show
it how to push its feet out when going forward.
- Try laundry basketball. Get soft balls, small pillows or bean bags
and toss them into a laundry basket.
- Chase me! Go to your back yard or the park. Make a game out of
letting your child run, and then you chase it. Hugs and kisses are a
nice reward when you catch it, then switch. Run slowly and let your
child try to catch you.
- Give a wagon ride. Encourage your toddler to fill a wagon with its
teddy bears and give them a ride. Don't have a wagon? Tie a string
around a box and have your toddler pull it.
- Make music. Pots and pans can easily become a drum set. Or, get a
toy piano or tambourine and let your child shake and bang its way to
- Take baby steps. Learning to walk down steps is more difficult than
walking up. Hold your child's hand and let it slowly practice going up
and down. The stairs of a small slide at the playground are a great
place to practice climbing steps.
- Make a pretend balance beam. Put a 2-inch wide strip of masking tape
on the floor or sidewalk. Have your child walk along the tape, placing
one foot in front of the other.
- Get ready to bowl. Empty plastic soda bottles or milk cartons can be
used as pins. Show your baby once how to roll a large ball to knock them
over and your baby will be getting strikes in no time.
- Be a frog. First, hold your baby's hands and encourage it to jump
off a low step. Once it has the hang of that, put something small on the
ground and tell your baby to pretend it's a frog and jump over the
- Teach your baby how to drive. While too young for even a tricycle, a
car with pedals can strengthen its legs and help it learn how to control
Gross Motor Skills by Age Group
Gross motor development involves the larger, stronger muscle groups. In
early child development, it's the development of these muscles that enable
it to hold its head up, sit, crawl and eventually walk, run, jump and skip.
Find Early Intervention
Support contacts in your State. If you have a question or comment for
us, please visit our Contact page.
Early Intervention Helps with Developmental Delay
For children with Special Needs, intervention in early childhood
development means finding specific ways to help a child become as functional
Learn more on our Parenting
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