Babies who can't crawl at 9 months fall behind at school

Babies who can't crawl at 9 months fall behind at school

Delays affect about 10 per cent of children

Babies who can't crawl at 9 months fall behind at school

Researchers from the University of London, Institute of Education, tracked 15,000 children over the first five years of their lives, and found that those kids who could not crawl at nine months face falling behind at school and struggle to get on with their classmates.

The Millennium Cohort Study, which looked at babies born between 2000 and 2001, said, a simple screening test before children reach their first birthday could prove crucial in preventing youngsters falling behind.

Professor Ingrid Schoon, who led the study, said, “all children develop at different rates and some who struggle to sit or crawl may simply catch up. However, in other cases, the problems can point to a developmental delay that may need specialised help, she added.

For their study, the team checked the gross and fine motor skills of the babies, the “Daily Mail” reported. In tests of gross motor skills, 96 per cent babies were able to sit up without support, 92 per cent were able to crawl and 69 per cent could stand up if they were holding on to something. Only 4 per cent could take a few steps.

In the assessment of fine motor skills, 99 per cent of children were able to grab an object, 95 per cent could pass a toy from one hand to the other, and 89 per cent could pick up an object using their forefinger and thumb.  The researchers concluded developmental ‘delays’ affected about 10 per cent of children.

Youngsters who struggled with the tasks had a significantly increased risk of falling behind at school when they were five, they said. Such kids are also more likely to demonstrate anti-social behaviour like refusing to share.

A motor skill is an action that involves muscles in your body.  Gross motor skills are larger movements including crawling and running, while fine motor skills are smaller actions such as picking up an object between the thumb and finger.

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