Child development and milestones: Your 4-years-7-months-old
Is your 4-years-7-months-old child's development on track?
Have you noticed that you now have a little adult in the house aged just 4 years 7 months old? That’s right – it’s your child! He is growing more independent, brimming with self confidence at times and can be downright bossy too!
Read on to find out about the common developmental milestones of your 4 years 7 months old child. Do bear in mind that children develop at their own individual paces, and they may achieve these milestones at different times. Please consult with your child’s paediatrician if you are concerned about his development.
Your child may start jumping up and down when it gets close to 5pm as he knows it’s time for the playground! There, allow your little one to run, hop, climb, swing from the monkey bars, throw and kick balls to his hearts’ content.
It’s a perfect time to teach skills like scootering, riding a tricycle or balance bike, or execute gymnastic drills like somersaulting and cartwheeling.
Look out for the following skills, too:
- Your little one can balance on one foot for at least a few seconds
- He can skip
- Can stack at least 10 blocks
- Your child can climb steps alone, placing one foot after the other (not both feet on one step before proceeding to the next)
- Can walk a few steps backwards
- Let your child practice his new-found abilities and enjoy his independence. However, remember to always bring water when you go to the park, and dress him in a helmet and knee pads if he is cycling or scootering. If you’re going to be outdoors at dusk, bring mosquito repellent.
- Play fun games that strengthen existing physical skills. For example, walking 8 steps backwards, or balancing for 10 seconds on one foot.
When to talk to your doctor:
If your child shows any of the signs below, it may be worthwhile to make a trip to your family paediatrician.
- Is unable to stack more than 8 blocks
- Has trouble holding a crayon or a paint brush
- Has trouble with dressing or undressing his or herself, with cleaning their teeth, using the bathroom and washing and drying their hands
You may need to get yourself a pair of earplugs! Your little one may be a natural chatterbox and can surprise you by easily holding a lengthy conversation not just with you but also with his friends. At this age, your child can now use logic to ask and answer questions, impressing you with the thought process they go through.
Plus your child may be your own home entertainment system. Once he or she gets in the mood, watch out for singing, dancing, performing and maybe even some magic tricks.
Other language and cognitive milestones your child may achieve this coming year :
- Making up his own words
- Knowing left from right
- Work out how things work, i.e., being able to screw and unscrew a lid from a jar
- Understand the concept of time, i.e., breakfast is in the morning, lunch is at noon and dinner is at night.
- The ability to grasp what is past, present and future. For example, knowing what they have done, what they are doing and what they are going to do
It may be easier on you as your child can now understand complex commands such as “Please keep your toys, change into your pyjamas and brush your teeth. It’s bedtime.”
Your child may also be able to write his own name and memorise your phone number and address.
- Your child is learning to take complex commands so help him or her out by keeping your instructions clear, simple and concise. Set them up for success!
- Practise positive reinforcement. When your child achieves something, praise his so that the behaviour will be repeated
- Allow your child to play with simple everyday items. You will be amazed to see how his imagination and creativity transforms a simple pot or pan into a magical toy.
- Occasionally, let your child play with more sophisticated toys that challenges and tests his cognitive development.
When to talk to your doctor:
If you notice that your child is displaying any of these signs, you may want to get it checked out by their paediatrician.
- Being really afraid, shy or aggressive
- Cannot focus on a task for more than 5 minutes; gets easily distracted
- Having a limited amount of interests
- Being unable to say his or her full name
- Rarely pretending or fantasising
- Often seeming sad, unhappy and not expressing a wide range of emotions
By this age your child will be talking non-stop! You may even find it difficult to make him stay quiet for a while. But this is a good sign because it indicates development of language and motor skills at the same time. You’ll also notice him do the following:
- Write his/her own name
- Memorise your phone number and address
- Speak clearly and intelligibly
- He will be able to use all the grammatical markers such as pronouns (me, you, he, she, him, her, we, us, they, them)
- He will also be able to use possessive pronouns (My, mine, your, yours, his, her, hers, our, ours, their, theirs)
- He can now add ‘ing’ at the end of words
- He can also understand conjunctions such as ‘and’
- Since at this stage, he can correctly pick up most grammatical markers, its a good idea to practice speaking full sentences with him.
- Read him a book or two per day and make sure to share meaning of words
- You can also use flashcards to show him how to use pronouns and conjunctions.
When to talk to your doctor:
- When you notice that he is unable to use any grammatical markers
- He cannot grasp the concept of tenses- past, present, and future
- He is unable to stitch a sentence together
It will be cute to see your child hanging out with his friends, or enjoying his playdates very much. He is learning that the world does not revolve around him. Now, he understands that other people have feelings too!
“No! You already had a turn, it’s my turn now!”
You will start to hear your little one working through conflicts and hopefully learning to share and take turns most of the time!
Emotional and social milestones your child may hit this coming year :
- Understands and obeys rules; but may still be demanding and uncooperative at times
- Can express negative emotions verbally instead of physically
- If you witness a conflict like the one above, resist the urge to intervene. Let your child learn to work it out alone. Only step in if necessary.
- Encourage your child to express what he is feeling; whether its positive or negative. Allow his to work through his emotions.
When to speak to your doctor:
If your child:
- Shows extreme separation anxiety
- Does not want to play with other children
- Refuses to make eye contact with or respond to other people.
An average 4 years 7 months old child will grow to be around 100.3-107.9cm in height and weigh between 15.4 and 17.9kg in weight. Nutrition is important for your child’s growth and learning and also to provide energy for high activity levels.
Your little one is able to feed himself and able to try a wide variety of foods. Offer different choices for your little one to explore tastes, colours and textures and mealtimes will be an exciting adventure that your child will look forward to.
Here are the nutrients your child will need to meet his nutritional goals.
|Nutrient||Amount Needed Daily||What To Feed Them|
|Calcium||1000mg||3 cups of full fat milk|
|Vitamin D||600-1000 IU (International Units)||About 1 hour of exposure to morning sun|
|Iron||10 milligrams||1 cup of wholegrain cereal or 100g of hamburger meat or a handful of nuts|
|Vitamin C||25 milligrams||Half an orange or a quarter cup of broccoli or 3 strawberries|
By this age, your child should already have had these vaccinations:
- Five doses of diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis (DTaP) vaccine
- Four doses of inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV)
- Three or four doses of Haemophilus influenzae type B (Hib) vaccine
- Two doses of measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine
- Three doses of hepatitis B (HBV) vaccine
- Two doses of chickenpox (varicella) vaccine
- Two or three doses of rotavirus vaccine (RV)
- Four doses of pneumococcal conjugate vaccines (PCV, PPSV)
- One or two doses of hepatitis A vaccine (HAV).
- Flu vaccine (to be done yearly)
Common illnesses to look out for are cough, cold and ear infections, common flu, chicken pox, measles, mumps and possible food allergies.
When to Talk to Your Doctor:
- If you see a sudden change in your child’s weight, that is a red flag.
- If there is persistent vomiting and/or diarrhoea.
- Your child has a rash that doesn’t seem to go away, or is painful or is deep into the skin.
- A fever at this age can also lead to something serious, so be sure to consult with a doctor if your little one is running a temperature or complains of pain.
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