Child Vision Guide – Vision Development in Children

Children have some ability to see from the time they are born. As their eyes grow and develop and with experience, children become able to understand what seen. Alter the focus of eyes to see things more clearly al different distances. Control the movements of the eyes and use both of them together. Child vision development and Recognize colors.

child vision

Stage of Child Vision

New-born Child Vision

When new-born, a baby probably only aware of vague shapes, dark, light and movement. Babies of this age very short-sighted because their eyes have a fixed focus of about 20-25 cm. They consequently see most clearly those things which at this distance, with objects further away appearing blurred. When an object is placed about 20 cm in front of even the youngest baby, he looks at it for about two seconds. Babies look longer at patterns than solid colors — which indicates that they find patterns more interesting.

When a mother holds her baby in her arms, the distance between the eyes of the mother and baby is the distance at which the infant can best focus. Babies are particularly interested in faces, and a few days after birth a baby is able to recognize his mother’s face. Within a week or two, he will gaze at her face as she feeds or talks to him.

A newborn baby is sensitive to the intensity of light and will shut his eyes tightly and keep them shut when a bright light is turned on. The baby also notices movement and will follow an adult or other large objects for a moment. When an object, for example, a bunch of keys, is dangled close to the baby, he will stare at it and will follow with short, jerking movements of his eyes if it is slowly moved from side to side.

Observe 3 months child vision

Although still short-sighted, the baby now has a greater focusing range and therefore can see further. There is also much more control over the movements of the eyes. The baby is very interested in looking at everything around him and is able to follow people who are moving nearby. At this age, a baby spends much time watching his own hands as he lies on his back.

Child Vision 6 months

The eyes have learned to work together and the baby is rarely cross-eyed (unless he has an eye defect). He will alter the position of his head to see what he wants to see.

Test Child Vision 1 year

The baby is able to focus on objects which are quite a long way away, and he can easily recognize people at a distance. The eyes are also able to follow a rapidly moving object.

Test Child Vision 2 years

The child can now see everything. which an adult can see.

Test Child Vision 3-5 years

A child begins to show a sense of color from the age of about 3 years. From then onwards there is a gradual improvement in the ability to recognize different colors. Red and yellow usually the first colors to known, and blue and green the next. Most 5-year-olds know four or five colors.

Eye defects

Children’s eyesight is given routine tests by health visitors, generally at 6 weeks old, between 6 and 9 months, and again at about 18 months. Their sight will also be tested when they start school. The aim of these tests is to discover any eye defects so that the correct treatment can be given to remove or reduce the handicap.


A child has a squint when the eyes appear crossed or turn in opposite directions. This means that the child is unable to use both eyes to look at the same object. A mild squint is normal in the first 6 months of life, but if it persists after that, the child’s eyes need to be checked by an eye specialist. If a squint not treated within 2 or 3 years, the child may go blind in one eye. Treatment includes the wearing of glasses and exercises for the eye muscles. The photographs show a young child with a squint, and the same child wearing glasses to make her use her weaker eye to correct the squint.

Short sight

A short-sighted child can see near objects clearly but everything further away appears blurred. Short-sightedness develops most often between the ages of 6-10 years, and it can develop quite rapidly. Short sight interferes with schoolwork; for example, a child who is unable to see the blackboard may seem to be restless or slow.

 Long sight

This makes objects near to the eyes appear blurred and fine details missed. It is less common in children than short sight and may be more difficult to recognize. Long-sighted children have difficulty with writing and other close work and so they may seem to lack interest and be lazy.

Color blindness

This is much more common in boys than in girls. About 8% of boys affected to some degree compared with about 0.4% of girls. The usual form red-green color blindness; people with this defect cannot distinguish red from green.

Child vision


This defect of the eye makes things look crooked or out of shape.


Babies who are born blind will grow in the same way as other children but their development will be hindered. Their lack of sight reduces opportunities for making contact with people and for play. This, in turn, reduces their opportunities for learning. Blind children will not be able to:

  • Make eye-to-eye contact with people (important in the emotional development of young children)
  • gradually gain experience by seeing things and remembering
  • what they look like
  • reach out for objects which look interesting in order to play with them
  • watch people and learn from watching
  • seek out people — they will always have to wait for people to come to them
  • Move around on their own without frightened or in danger
  • understand the meaning of a green field, or red shoes, or a rainbow.

Blind children learn mostly through, touch and hearing. They, therefore, need specialist help and training from the earliest possible moment to reduce, as far as possible, the effects of their handicap. Parents need to teach how best to help their blind children develop.


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