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Early Steps/Early Intervention Program
Health Planning Council of Southwest Florida, Inc. runs the Early Steps/Early Intervention Program serving children ages 0 to 3 with developmental delays and their families. Florida’s Early Intervention Program is improving its service delivery system to better support infants and toddlers and their families – in places where they live, learn and play.  An enhanced family-focused early intervention system called Early Steps has replaced the former Infants & Toddlers Early Intervention Program with a new Mission, Vision and Values.  

For more information, please visit HPCSWF's website.

Babies and toddlers grow and develop at their own pace, but usually can do the following activities by the age listed. 

Your Child's Growth and Developmental Steps from Birth to 36 Months:

At 3 months Indicators for Concern

Turns head toward bright light and sounds 
Watches faces and objects
Lifts head and chest while on stomach
Makes cooing sounds, chuckles
Soothes with cuddling
Enjoys touch
Kicks feet, moves hands
Brings hands to mouth

  • Does not watch moving objects

  • No startle to sound


At 6 months Indicators for Concern

Recognizes happy and sad voices
Plays with hands and feet
Brings most objects to mouth
Reaches for objects with both hands and moves from 
     hand to hand
Sits but may need support
Babbles more than 2 sounds
Rolls from stomach to back
Turns to find your voice
Has good head control
Laughs while playing
Reaches and grasps toys, objects
Has predictable sleep pattern

  • Unable to roll over

  • Difficulty lifting head

  • Does not turn head to direction of sound


At 9 months Indicators for Concern     

Begins crawling
Smile at self in mirror
Explore objects closely with hands and eyes
Plays peek-a-boo and patty cake
Begin sitting without assistance
Looks for hidden toy
Throws toys or objects
Pulls self up, stands while holding on
Feeds self finger food such as cereal
Imitate sounds like "ooh" and "ahh"

  • Unable to sit by self

  • Difficulty picking up objects

  • Not imitating or babbling



At 12 months Indicators for Concern

Pulls self up and stands
Says "Mama", "Baba", or "Dada"
Takes a few steps while holding on
Copies your sounds
Begins to follow simple directions (please come here,
     drink your juice)
Waves bye-bye
Presses buttons on phone, toys
Enjoys being read to
Use 1-3 words
Holds bottle

  • Does not use single words like "Mama" or "Dada"

  • Difficulty crawling

  • Needs to use hand to maintain sitting


At 15 months Indicators for Concern

Stands and steps towards or walks
Stacks 2-3 blocks
Helps to dress by holding out arms or legs
Knows and says 4-5 words
Makes voice go up and down, to sound like a
Listens to a story
Curious - will explore on own

  • Unable to stand alone

  • Does not point to objects, people

  • Does not hold own cup

At 18 months Indicators for Concern

Walk and maybe run a little
Climb up or down one stair
Enjoys pull toys
Prefers to feed self
Knows names of things, people
Throws a ball

Drinks from a cup and eats with a spoon
Plays along side other children

Squats to pick up toys
Begins pretend play

  • Unable to walk without help

  • Does not say at least 15 words

  • Unable to feed self with spoon


At 24 months Indicators for Concern

Kicks a large ball
Turns pages, 2 or 3 at a time
Imitates housework
Recognizes familiar pictures, books and knows if they
    are upside down
Asks for items by name
Uses 2-3 words together
Makes circular strokes with a pencil
Says "mine"
Jumps in place
Engages in pretend play (using spoon as an airplane)

  • Does not follow simple directions

  • Does not pretend play

  • Walks on toes

  • Difficulty holding large size crayon


At 36 months Indicators for Concern

Stands on one foot for a moment
Walks up stairs
Rides a tricycle
Feeds self
Opens a door
Responds to feelings of others
Indicates need to use the toilet - shows interest in
    toilet training
Partially dresses and undresses
Shares toys, takes turns during play
Uses 3-word sentences
Names at least one color
Completes 3-4 piece puzzle

  • Words/speech not understood by others

  • No interest in other children

  • Poor balance, falls frequently


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