What you need to know to keep your child's development on track.


Every child learns and grows differently. The sections below cover common questions, concerns, resources and tips to give you the knowledge you need to help your child excel.

When Do I Need to Be Concerned About My Child's Development?

Between birth and age four, children learn to roll over, sit, walk, run and climb. They learn to use their hands to play with toys, draw, write and feed themselves. They learn to communicate their needs, thoughts and feelings. It's important to remember that every child follows a unique timeline in development, and that learning and growth rates vary widely.

Talking to Your Child's Teacher About Concerns

Addressing concerns with your child's teachers can be intimidating. Know that unless it's an urgent safety issue, it's fine to take some time to collect your thoughts before scheduling the meeting.

Before meeting with the teacher, ask yourself: “What do I want to see happen?” and “Why is it important for my child?”

As you think about these questions, write down your ideas. Then, bring them with you to help ensure the teacher understands your exact concerns.

Finally, arrange a time to talk face to face. If that's not possible, a phone call is a good second option. Try not to use email to present your concerns. It’s best to have a conversation so that you can freely exchange feelings and ideas. Want more tips on how to talk to your child's teacher? Click here.

Developmental Monitoring

Almost one in four children through the age of five are at risk for a developmental delay or disability. Developmental screenings allow for early identification, which in turn leads to more effective and cheaper treatment options. Here are three resources on developmental screening to start with:

Birth to Five: Watch Me Thrive Information and resources for families, early learning professionals, community members and others on healthy child development, developmental monitoring and behavioral screening from the Department of Health.

Easter Seals Make the First Five Count Families can complete an online Ages and Stages Questionnaire and have the results and suggested activities emailed to them.

Learn the Signs. Act Early. Checklists, brochures, videos and other resources for families and early educators from the CDC.

About the Georgia Early Learning and Development Standards (GELDS)

The Georgia Early Learning and Development Standards (GELDS) promote quality learning experiences for children, and address the question “What should children from birth to age five know and be able to do?” They're a set of appropriate, attainable standards that are flexible enough to support children’s individual rates of development, approaches to learning, and cultural context.

The GELDS form the foundation for classroom instruction in Georgia’s Pre-K Program. These standards are coordinated with Georgia’s Kindergarten Performance Standards to allow for seamless transition from Georgia’s Pre-K to Kindergarten.

In addition to helping teachers provide a quality learning experience, the GELDS also guide parents in supporting their child's growth, development and learning potential.

You can learn more about the GELDS here: http://gelds.decal.ga.gov/.

Materials and Resources

Learning doesn’t just happen at school. Your child’s education at home and in your community is also critical to later success. Going to libraries and museums is a great starting point. There's also a variety of online resources to help support your child's learning, including:

Talk with Me Baby

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Essentials for Parenting Toddlers and Preschoolers

Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) Parents: Resources

Sesame Street: Parent Tool Kit

Vroom: Family Resources

Physical Health and Development

Obesity can have detrimental effects on children and needs to be addressed early. Child care facilities provide an optimal setting for obesity prevention. By providing healthy environments, nutrition and physical activity education, child care facilities can improve the health and well-being of children in their care.