When should my child receive their first eye exam?
Answer: at 6 months of age
Many vision problems can be detected at this stage and the earlier a condition is caught, the higher the chance of correction. If left un-examined, young children may not even realize that anything is wrong because they assume that everyone sees the same way they do.
How often should my child have their eyes examined?
Answer: Every year
Changes in vision can occur without you or your child realizing it and without obvious symptoms. Eye exams are covered for all children 0-18 years of age.
For more information see: ‘Vision – Birth through Adolescence’
Child Vision Development Timeline
As a parent, it is important to know how your child’s vision development is affected as they grow.
Following is a quick activity reference guide to ensure your child’s vision develops in a healthy and timely fashion.
Birth to six months
- Lots of tummy time
- Follow faces up, down, sideways, closer, farther>
- Crumble paper or make noises to the side and have baby turn toward it
- Change position frequently so their view of the world changes
- Bed trampoline with support for both hands to encourage balanced bouncing
- Lots of sound toys to touch, grasp, listen to and find visually and auditorially
Six to twelve months
- Lots of creeping and crawling time
- Manipulative toys to grasp, roll, pick up, push, pull, bang, throw, squeeze, on/off
- Drop it games with toys, spoon and containers to fill and empty
- Slowly rolling balls to follow and stop
- Use simple words and sentences about clothing, food, toys and baby
- Play Hide-and-Seek
Twelve to eighteen months
- Use names for actions and objects, language is developing quickly
- Water and sand play with containers, cups, pails, plastic bottles
- Crayons and large sheets of paper for creative scribbling
- Surprise busy box with things to put together, take apart, fit shapes into spaces
- Make believe play, telephone, human and animal dolls
Eighteen months to two years
- Build towers and structures
- Toys to put together / take apart, pour, nest, hinges
- “Imagine this” while talking about objects, activities, stories
- Four-wheeled toys to straddle and move
- Conquer the obstacle course of furniture, pillows or junior gym
Two to three years
- Running, tumbling &climbing
- Uses crayons, drawing paper, simple single shape puzzles
- Make-believe games, dolls, dress-up clothes, stories
- Begins to classify objects, colors
- Learning to socialize with one playmate at a time
Three to four years
- Can dodge, throw, stop/go, turn sharp corners
- Can play well in small groups
- Encourage puzzles, hidden pictures, same/different identification
- Encourage drawing, coloring, activities with clay and play-dough
- Read lots of books and stories together
Four years and older
- Tells stories, makes up names, Talks and talks and …
- Intellectual development moves ahead quickly
- Fine motor development continues
- Provide lots of opportunities to explore these new abilities.