From three to four years
Toddlers Enter Childhood
Keeping three year olds healthy
- Routine vaccinations should be received at 3 years and four months – to make sure that your child is protected from dangerous infectious diseases
- Model good habits for future life – children will quickly pick up and model adult behaviour
- Young children need to have lots of access to the outdoors – it has many benefits both for healthy living and learning
- Young children need to be taught how to take care of themselves –physically, socially and emotionally by being able to talk about their feelings
- Children become increasingly aware of their bodies and gender – they see similarities but also begin to realise differences
Keeping three year olds safe
- Children continue to be dependent upon adults for safety – but need to be taught how to look after themselves
- Risks should be lessened as children come to be secure in their own skills – based on experience
- Road safety should be taught to children – to lessen the risk of traffic accidents
- Children should learn to swim as soon as possible – so that the risk of drowning is reduced
- Travel always carries risk – and safety precautions should be explained and used by children in all circumstances
Helping three year olds learn
- Play is the main way in which children learn – and is particularly important for well-being
- At this stage fine manipulative skills are sufficiently developed for children to be able to hold a pencil – and they will enjoy mark-making and drawing
- Children begin to socialise and develop empathy – they may start to have a special friends as well as notice the differences and similarities in other peoples lives.
- At this age we can begin to support our children becoming tolerant and compassionate people – people who will respect the diversity of the world they live in.
- A love of books and well developed language skills are what children need to be ready for reading – and if children love stories they will be motivated to read themselves
- Children learn a lot from becoming acquainted with the local environment – and this opportunity for learning should not be missed
Children with disabilities may have a wider range of developmental milestones and so their needs may differ – always consult with your Doctor, Health Visitor, Nursery or Children’s Centre who will be able to provide more information on supporting individual children’s development.
Enjoy being with your child being at this age, as that is the best way to prepare them for the next stage of their learning and development!