Visual Skills Development for Babies 1 – 4 Months

CME WebsitesChild Development, Infants 3 - 12 Months, Newborns 0 - 3 Months

At this time infants should be following slowly moving objects intermittently to midline. When taking photos, you will begin to notice your baby blinking at the flash. Visual acuity is still in the 20/200 to 20/400 range.  Infants are beginning to recognize familiar people, and by 3 months they should be reaching for things.

By 4 months your child’s eyes should be working together.   He or she should begin to follow objects and people, recognize familiar objects, as well as watch parents’ faces when being talked to.

Other visual milestones include:

  • Blinks to visual threat
  • Establishes eye contact
  • Reaches toward objects but does not grasp
  • Watches own hands
  • Shifts gaze from one near object to another near object
  • Visually explores environment
  • Begins to shift attention from one near object to one far object and vice versa


  • There are a lot of developmental toys, but brightly colored, simple toys or everyday household objects work just fine
  • Hang a mobile above the crib and/or changing table (out of reach), make sure it has a variety of colors and shapes
  • Place a shatterproof mirror by the baby to promote self-recognition
  • Offer plenty of opportunities for supervised tummy time
  • Give lots of face-to-face time and change your facial expressions (happy, surprised, etc.)
  • Periodically change the location of your infant’s crib
  • Alternate sides when feeding your baby even if you are bottle-feeding
  • Make sure to put a floppy hat on your infant when outside to protect his/her eyes from the sun