Development of a 3-Year-Old

Physical Characteristics

  • Shoulders are held more erect
  • Body becomes straighter and slimmer overall
  • Chest begins to broaden and flatten
  • Stomach begins to flatten

Emotional Characteristics

  • Are learning to cooperate and be considerate to others
  • Are less frustrated as they become more physically capable
  • Modifies behavior for praise and acceptance
  • Can be reasoned with
  • Are more willing to take directions

Social Characteristics

  • Seek friends on their own
  • Prefer being around some children more than others
  • Work in small groups
  • Play cooperatively

Physical Care

  • Must be encouraged to dress themselves and choose clothing
  • Fabric must be comfortable and allow room for growth
  • Front and back of clothing must be easily identifiable
  • Clothing must be appropriate for the situation or activity
  • Pajamas must be flame-resistant
  • Name can not be on the outside of garments

Motor Skills

Gross Motor Skills

  • Can jump in place
  • Catches a ball with arms straight
  • Can ride a tricycle
  • Can run
  • Can climb

Fine Motor Skills

  • Can build towers out of blocks
  • Screws lids on and off of containers
  • Can draw simple shapes with a crayon held in their fist