Social-Emotional Development

Birth- Age 2

Grace Lubanski


  • the quality and intensity of emotional reactions.
  • passivity- how actively involved
  • irritability- feeling distressed
  • activity patterns- levels of movement


  • strong emotional connection that develops between people.
  • infants get attached to the people who mainly take care of them.
  • when approached by those people they will break out a smile.
  • clinging and crying are attachment behaviors.
  • separation anxiety- child protests because a caregiver is leaving.

Changes Over Time

Birth- 3 months

  • infants don't have refined emotions
  • excitement is shown by smiling or giggling
  • distress is shown by crying
  • no tears are present

3-6 Months

  • responses to people appear more.
  • they make happy sounds
  • crying is still present
  • tears begin to appear

6-12 Months

  • become actively involved
  • make sounds in response to talking
  • crying when they see a stranger
  • separation anxiety starts to show
  • if you take a child away from their parent they will try to push away

12-24 Months

  • clinging to a parent knowing they are leaving
  • become more interested in exploring
  • show interest in other children (play next to them, not with)
  • aware of their abilities
  • if they cannot do something themselves they will become frustrated