Hyperactivity is typically accompanied by a short attention span, but it doesn't mean that your child is automatically hyperactive if she has a hard time concentrating. As we understand the development of children from infancy (first year of life) to being a toddler (second and third years of life) and a preschooler (from four to six years old), they characteristically have rather short attention spans. They are also often very curious. They express their curiosity in the most basic sensory modalities: seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, and touching. They like to move around and to enjoy the physical experience of their environment. This is a way for them to understand the world around them, a first glimpse of what the world might offer.

Suspecting that your child is hyperactive may be reading too much into basic curiosity, but then again, a mother’s instinct is pretty powerful. Before you make any conclusions, however, take a quick peek at these reminders first:

(First published as "Keep It Real" in the "Good Family" section of Good Housekeeping Philippines' November 2011 issue. Adapted for use in Female Network. Additional reporting by Jennifer Chan. All photos are for illustrative purposes only. Photo by Barnaby Wasson via Flickr Creative Commons.)

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