Little Stepping Stones has two daily care programs, as well as after school and summer programs
Choose Below  Child Development Traits for Three Year Olds   Quick Links

In the table below, we've identified some milestones that children reach during their three's. These are just guidelines, please remember that all children advance at their own pace.


 Social & Emotional

3 years

highly imitative of adults; wants to please adults, conforms; easily prompted or redirected


can be bargained with, reasoned with; begins to share, take turns and wait; says "me-too" frequently


exuberant, talkative, humorous; has imaginary companions; plays cooperatively with others; plays spontaneously in groups; dramatizes play

  has nightmares, animal phobias; goes after desires, fights for things; asserts independence
  sympathizes with others; often stymied, frustrated or jealous; strong sex-role stereotypes



3 years

Talkative with or without listener; can listen to learn; likes new words; intrigued by whispering

  increases use of pronouns, uses words in the plural and past tense; uses sentences of three words or more; says "is that all right?" a lot; talks about non-present situations
  puts words into action; moves and talks at same time; substitutes letters in speech - "w" for "r"; uses 300 to 1000 words


Physical - Motor Skills

3 years

well-balanced body lines; walks erect, nimble on feet; gallops in wide, high steps; alternates feet in stair climbing; activity has drive and purpose


starts and stops suddenly; turns corners rapidly; swings arms when walking; jumps up and down easily; can balance on one foot


uses toilet alone; achieves bladder control; loses baby fat

  rides a tricycle; puts on and takes off wraps with help; unbuttons buttons; has some finger control with small objects, grasps with thumb and index finger
  Holds cup in one hand; pours easily from small pitcher; washes hands unassisted; can carry liquids


Intellectual -Cognitive

3 years

matches people according to physical characteristics; estimates "how many"; enjoys making simple decisions; understands "it's time to...."


alert, excited and curious; asks "why?" constantly; enjoys guessing games and riddles; has lively imagination; often over generalizes and has a short attention span.

  often colors pages one color; can't combine two activities; names and matches simple colors; has number concepts of one and two:
  sees vague cause and effect relationships; can recognize simple melodies; distinguishes between day and night; understands size and shape comparisons


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