Early childhood is very exciting. The world opens up for a child. Independence increases and the child focuses on adults and kids outside the family unit. Expect many questions at this stage, as kids can be very inquisitive and curious. Their personalities develop based on the interactions with family and people around them. Thus, it is important that kids have positive role models and influences around them. Individual ways of thinking and acting are molded now. Further, during this stage, the child gains independence with daily activities. He or she will be able to ride a tricycle, dress and undress, sing songs, play with other kids, stand on tip toes, hold utensils and crayons with more ease, and be aware of gender identity. By four years of age, a child is usually fully potty trained.
Further, a three to five year old will draw letters and shapes. He or she will also draw family members. Concerning language development, the child will be able to form sentences and use plurals. He or she will thoroughly enjoy listening to stories. The child will memorize parts of a book or story. Further, he or she will start thinking about other objects and making associations. For instance, the child will know that a certain type of ball is meant to be kicked.
The terrible twos will dwindle away at this stage, because of improved vocabulary. Children do not get frustrated because of the inability to express themselves. They can communicate more clearly while using more words and forming full sentences. They learn that they can express feelings and thoughts through speech. They also get a vague understanding of right and wrong. During this stage, children become less attached to their parents or caregivers. They learn how to interact with peers properly—by taking turns and sharing. They also start bonding with pets. Further, they get excited over upcoming holidays.
In order to ensure the proper development of a child, follow these tips:
- Read to your child.
- Take your child to the library or bookstore.
- Encourage your child to interact and play with other kids.
- Discipline your child properly and clearly.
- Be a positive role model.
- Speak to your child in “adult language” and complete sentences.
- Promote drawing.
Further, make sure that your child is safe. A three to five year old needs guidance. Keep a watchful eye. Here are some tips to help you.
- Make sure your child knows to stay out of traffic and refrain from running after stray balls in the street.
- If you take your child to ride a tricycle in the neighborhood, stress the importance of staying on the sidewalk.
- Make sure you teach your child how to swim. Water safety is important.
- Check playground equipment for sharp edges or loose parts.
- Teach your child how to act around strangers.
- Always keep an eye on your child, when he or she plays outside.