Child development and milestones: Your 5-years-2-month-old child

Child development and milestones: Your 5-years-2-month-old child

Check out the developmental milestones for children aged 5 years 2 months old!

It seemed like only yesterday when your child relied on you for every want and need. But at 5 years 2 months old, your little one seems ready to take on the world! At this age, your child is an optimist whose attitude will see him/her try new things without much hesitation.

In general, your 5 years 2 months old child is very happy to take life as it comes. You'll notice that go-getter attitude through some of the things your little one will say, like "Sure!" and "Wonderful!" And what's best of all is that your kid will be more cooperative with you since he/she isn't trying to prove he/she is the boss around here!

Here are some of the key milestones to take note of for kids that are 5 years 2 months old.

5 Years 2 Months old Development and Milestones: Is Your Child on Track?

your child loves to play at this age

Physical Development

Your child is very confident in his own abilities now. He/she doesn't stumble and fall anywhere near as much as before, and can perform many more complex moves. This confidence might be due in part to the 20/20 vision your child now has. 

But it's not just great vision that allows your child to see things more clearly. Your 5 years 2 months old little one is also more in control of his/her body, and understands his physical abilities and limitations better. This also lowers the risk of injuries and accidents.

Some of the physical actions your child can perform at 5 years 2 months old are:

  • Walk up and down stairs without any assistance
  • Walk forward and backwards without any issues
  • Hop and skip confidently
  • Can fasten buttons and zippers
  • Prefers to use one hand over the other
  • Learns to hold a pencil with two fingers and a thumb
  • Handles utensils with ease

At this stage, your child’s median height and weight* should be as follows:

  • Boys
    – Height: 110.3 cm (43.4 inches)
    – Weight: 18.9 kg (41.6lb)
  • Girls
    – Height: 109.1 cm (43.0 inches)
    – Weight: 18.4 kg (40.6lb)

Parenting Tips:

  • Let your child have time and space to play outside. Encouraging him/her to play helps them develop their gross motor skills.
  • Invite your kid's friends over or go on play dates. Your child loves spending time with other people and can learn from watching them perform new actions.
  • Enroll your child in a fun physical activity class, like karate, ballet, or swimming. Learning specific actions helps with your child's flexibility and can be enjoyable when there is something to aim towards.
  • Encourage your child to help prepare breakfast. He/she can handle cereal and milk easily. However, there might be a few spills. Tell your child it's okay if a mess is made, but do teach him/her how to clean up too.

When to Talk to Your Doctor

If your child:

  • Can't brush his/her own teeth or wash his hands without help
  • Cannot stack a tower of blocks more than eight units high

their cognitive development is great

Cognitive Development

By now, your little one is very much aware of the world and has a general idea of what things are, as well as their functions. He/she understands what money is and can tell the difference between coins and notes.

Your child is constantly learning and picking up new skills, so it can be hard to pinpoint the exact milestones for 5 years 2 months old kids. However, your little one is innately curious and will continue to want to learn and try different things. This is always a good marker of growth that your child is exploratory.

You might pick up that your child is able to really get into pretend play! Your little one can play for up to 15 minutes without breaking character.

Here are some of the cognitive milestones to be aware of at this age:

  • Know that stories have a beginning, middle and end
  • Able to identify if numbers and letters aren't in order
  • Stick with one activity for at least 15 minutes
  • Plan ahead the next activity

Parenting Tips:

  • Role-play with your child when reading. The books are predictable and your child's memory will improve when he recites the lines of a character.
  • Take your child on shopping trips to see and learn about different items and actions
  • Practise writing and drawing with your child. Encourage drawing different objects and give plenty of praise for effort.

When to Talk to Your Doctor

If your child:

  • Has very few interests
  • Doesn't engage in pretend play or fantasising

engaging and social child

Social and Emotional Development

Your 5 years 2 months old child is a very sociable and adorable young person who looks up to you and wants you to be happy with him/her. As such, you'll notice your little one looking to you quite often for approval or comfort. In fact, your child will try different ways for you to express your love for him/her due to his need for reassurance.

At this point, your child is also equally able to express love for others. Your 5 years 2 months old child gets along very easily with other children and sometimes might want to play with them without you nearby.

Watch out for the following developments:

  • Enjoys playing with other children (usually two others) gets along well with others, although plays better with two friends than with three
  • Really loves to play “house”
  • Likes to play with blocks
  • Likes swinging, climbing, jumping, and skipping
  • Wants to please friends and might adopt some of their behaviours
  • Likes to get attention

Parenting Tips:

  • Ask your child how he/she feels when he tells stories. Learning how to express his/her feelings is the first step to also learning how to manage strong emotions, like anger or sadness.
  • Play games with rules. This gives you an opportunity to teach your child how to handle losing and use this as a learning opportunity to try again another time, instead of throwing a tantrum.
  • As much as your child likes playing with others, encourage solitary play, too. Get your child "props" like your old clothes, shoes, even pots and pans, so he can engage in imaginary play to boost both independence and creativity.

When to Talk to Your Doctor

If your child:

  • Does not make eye contact with or responds to other people
  • Often seems sad and unhappy
  • Does not express a wide range of emotions

Speech and Language Development

Your little one is an eloquent speaker at 5 years 2 months old. He/she can speak clearly in sentences consisting of more than five words. Your child understands a lot of what you say and can hold a lengthy conversation with you.

It's normal for kids at this stage to struggle with a stutter. If your child occasionally stumbles over words, don't fret - this is all part of your child's normal speech and language developmental process.

Your child now has a vocabulary of over 2000 words and this increases with every passing moment. She might try to incorporate these new words and may get them wrong.

If she does struggle, avoid correcting her immediately. Instead, use that word correctly when it's your turn to speak. "Yes, I'd LOVE to have a bowl of spaghetti!" is better than stopping him/her mid-sentence to correct her mispronunciation.

Here are some of the speech and language milestones that your child will likely have reached by now:

  • Tells stories with complete sentences.
  • Correctly uses future tense.
  • Recognises most of the alphabet letters.
  • Tells jokes and longer stories
  • Follows simple multi-step directions

Parenting Tips:

  • Take time to read a bedtime story to your child at bedtime. Encourage your child to select a different book each night, and don't forget to ask your child a few questions about the story too. Read new books with your child. This will help with vocabulary expansion.
  • Talk about what happened in the day. Use descriptive words to refer to the time, like "before" and "a while ago".
  • If you notice your child growing frustrated because of stuttering, be patient. Take your time to listen, and encourage your child to first think about what he wants to say, before speaking. This may help control the stutter.

When to Talk to Your Doctor

If your child:

  • Is not excited to tell you about his daily activities
  • Cannot say his full name
  • Is unable to complete a full sentence

5 Years 2 Months Old child writing on paper

Health and Nutrition

Your 5 years 2 months old child will be roughly 17kg-20.3kg in weight and 106cm-112.2cm in height. He will need about 1,200 to 1,600 calories daily, depending on just how active they are!

At this age, your child will find it easy to fill up on snacks. Ideally, you should aim to have three meal times (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) with two healthy snacks along the way.

Your little one's diet should have a balanced split of different nutrients and minerals.

Typically, the calorie intake for boys and girls of this age are as follows:

  • Boys: 1,678 Kcal/day
  • Girls: 1,572 Kcal/day

Their nutrition should be composed of the following:

Protein  

Your child needs two servings of protein (in total, around 32.4g) each day. One serving equals one to three tablespoons of lean meat, chicken, or fish, four to five tablespoons of dry beans and peas, or one egg.

Fruits 

Your child needs about one to three (100g) cups of fruits everyday. One cup of fruit equals one cup of fresh, frozen, or canned fruit, half (1/2) cup dried fruit, half (1/2) of a large apple, one eight- or nine-inch banana, or one medium grapefruit.

If your child wants to drink fruit juice, make sure it’s 100 percent juice without added sugars.

Vegetables 

At this stage, your child requires two cups (100g each) of vegetables every day. One cup of vegetables equals one cup of cooked or raw vegetables, two cups of raw leafy greens, one large tomato, or two medium carrots.

Aim to provide a variety of vegetables, including dark green, red and orange, beans and peas, starchy and others, each week. When selecting canned or frozen vegetables, look for options lower in sodium.

Grains 

Introduce a minimum of four ounces of grains in your child’s meals. One ounce of grains equals one slice of bread, one cup of ready-to-eat cereal, or half (1/2) cup of cooked pasta or cooked cereal.

Choose whole grains, such as whole-wheat bread, oatmeal, popcorn, quinoa, or brown or wild rice. Limit refined grains such as white bread, pasta and rice.

Milk/Dairy 

Your child should drink a minimum of 17 to 20 ounces of milk a day. You may also substitute one cup of milk with one cup of yogurt or soy milk , 1½ ounces of natural cheese (around the size of four stacked dice), or two ounces of processed cheese (around the size of five stacked dice).

In a nutshell, aim to include 3-5 ounces of protein (2 matchbox-sized portions of meat OR 1 egg), 1-1.5 cups of fruit (1 small banana, 2 strawberries quartered), 1.5-2.5 cups of vegetables, 4-6 ounces of grains (2 tablespoons of rice OR 1 slice of wholegrain bread OR 2 tablespoons of pasta), and 2.5 cups of dairy daily.

In a nutshell, here’s what you child needs every day (refer above for what the amounts look like):

  • Fruits: three cup for boys; three cups for girls
  • Vegetables: two cups for boys; two cups for girls
  • Grains: four ounces for boys; four ounces for girls
  • Proteins: 32.4g for boys; 32.4g for girls
  • Milk: 17-20 ounces for boys; 17-20 ounces for girls
  • Water: 1500 ml for boys; 1500 ml for girls (around six cups)

Parenting tips:

  • Limit sugary snacks to a minimum. Your little one will easily go through a bag of them if you allow it. With no nutritional benefits, sugary snacks only have negative health effects.
  • Keep food simple. You don't need to cook a fancy meal each time. Although your little one is smart and can use a fork, finger food is always fun and easy to eat, as well as prepare.
  • Ensure your child drinks at least 1.5 ltrs of water each day.

Vaccinations and Common Illnesses

Most of your child's vaccinations have already been covered at this age. Do check with your doctor for common ones your child needs on a more regular basis, like the flu shot.

As your child is spending more time around other children, expect him/her to contract common colds and the flu occasionally. Hand, foot and mouth disease is also another common illness among kids this age. You can prevent many of these conditions by practicing and teaching your child basic hygiene, including hand-washing.

Treating Common Illnesses

Out of the commons illnesses that might be caught by your child, the most common would the cold, fever and cough. Let us see how you could easily manage these at home.

  • To treat Cold: It is advisable that over the counter medication is avoid unless otherwise extremely necessary for common colds. Colds are usually caused by viruses therefore antibiotics do not work for a common cold. However, if the cold is progressed to a fever with aches and pains, it is best that you seek medical attention.
  • To treat fever: Give your child plenty of fluids if your child has fever over 38°C (100.4°F) and ensure he/she gets plenty of rest. You could also put apply lukewarm compresses on forehead, armpits and groin areas to help bring down the temperature. However,  if the temperature of your child rises above 38°C (100.4°F), you should take him/her to the doctor and follow medical advice to manage the health of your child.
  • To treat cough: Cough is quite common among children. it can however, be irritating if followed by runny nose and sneezing. It is best that you first first try home remedies such as ginger and honey mixed in lukewarm water. You can also ask your child to drink a minimum of eight glasses of water a day to help ease the discomfort. If the cough does not ease in three to five days, you need to get medical advise.

It is important to note that while some medications can be bought without prescriptions, it is best if the first treatment offered to your child for mild health issues should be simple home remedies.

Give plenty of warm fluids to a child with a  cold and cough. You can help your child gargle with warm salt water for a sore throat.

When to Talk to Your Doctor

If your child:

  • Is terribly underweight or overweight, or is losing/gaining weight rapidly
  • Has unusual rashes or lumps
  • Has a fever over 39 degrees Celsius

References: Mayoclinic, WebMD, Kidshealth

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Republished with permission from The Asian Parent

(*Disclaimer: This is the median height and weight according to WHO standards)

Written by

Africa parent