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Infants are biologically prepared to learn complex behaviors by interacting in dynamic, responsive social environments. Although the importance of interactive social experiences has long been recognized, current methods for studying complex multimodal interactions are lagging. This paper outlines a systems approach for characterizing fine-grained temporal dynamics of developing social interaction. We provide best practices for capturing, coding, and analyzing interaction activity on multiple -temporal scales, from fractions of seconds (e.g., gaze shifts), to minutes (e.g., coordinated play episodes), to weeks or months (e.g., developmental change).