Every child develops differently, but it is still a good idea to make sure that they are hitting their developmental milestones. If a child is not able to do some or most of the skills listed below, it may be a good idea to talk to your health care professional. Listed below you will find the major developmental milestones for children aged 3 to 5.
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Three Year Olds
Children who are three years old should understand general routines and basic personal care. This means that they should know that in the morning you wake up and eat breakfast, during the day you have lunch, bedtime is at night, etc. He or she should be able to dress themselves for the most part and copy things that they see adults doing, like pretending to drive or talk on the phone. By this age they should also be able to pedal a trike and walk up and down stairs one foot at a time.
Four Year Olds
Kids who are four really start to develop their imagination and will take on “real” roles while playing, like cops and robber, mother and daughter, etc. They should be able to count, even if they get a few numbers wrong here and there, as well as draw basic human figures. For major motor skills, he or she should be able to hop on one foot. For fine motor skills, they should be able to feed themselves without issues and use a spoon or fork to “cut” their food into smaller pieces.
Five Year Olds
By this age, most kids are in preschool or kindergarten. They like to make friends and play with other children and can also retell stories they have heard or even invent their own. Five year olds should be fully potty trained, able to dress themselves, speak clearly enough so other adults can understand them and know that there are differences between boys and girls. If you child cannot feed themselves, do a somersault or understand past, present and future tenses, you might want to discuss this with your doctor.
To find other milestones for children under age three or over age five, the CDC offers printable check lists online or you can also get them from your family doctor. Keep in mind that multiple births and premature babies do not follow the same guidelines a single and full term births.