3-Year-Old Child Developmental Milestones

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How your 3-year-old interacts with you and the people around them is an indication of their overall development.

At the age of three, your child is no longer completely helpless. They are well on their way to becoming more independent. By this age, there are certain developments you’ll notice in your child’s everyday behavior.

In this article, we’re going to explore all of these developments in great detail. Here’s what you can expect from your growing 3-year-old child.

Physical Development of 3-Year-Olds

Physical Development of 3-Year-Olds

By the time your child turns three, they will likely be running all over the place. You’ll hardly be able to stop them.

They should be able to walk forwards or backward without losing their balance. They should also have no problem leaning forward without falling down.

Your 3-year-old will climb easily. They’ll be able to climb the stairs by taking one step at a time. You should keep a constant eye on your child to avoid accidents.

But don’t be too worried. Kids of this age often fall down and hurt themselves. But that doesn’t mean they have a problem with keeping their balance. It’s more likely the fact that they get over-excited and are not being careful.

To further their balancing skills, get your child a tricycle. The age of three is the perfect age for your baby to learn to cycle through the house and the backyard.

Also Read:10 Things Kids Do that Might Look Naughty but Aren’t

Social Development Of 3-Year-Olds

Social Development Of 3-Year-Olds

You’ll notice your 3-year-old interacting with friends more spontaneously. They’ll share their toys with other kids. At the same time, your child will be quite aware of what belongs to them and what doesn’t.

If another kid is crying or in distress, it’s quite normal for a 3-year-old to be concerned about them. At this age, they will show deep affection towards others without being prompted.

One of your 3-year-old’s most significant achievements is the ability to dress. A 3-year-old will mimic their parents and the people around them spontaneously.

They’ll show all kinds of emotions at this age. You may find that your child gets violent and hits and bites you if you don’t listen to them.

Read More: 25 Innovative Ways To Keep Your Kids Entertained

Cognitive Development Of 3-Year-Olds

Cognitive Development Of 3-Year-Olds

As your little one hits the 3-year mark, they’ll start to develop sophisticated problem-solving skills. They’ll be able to solve simple puzzles of four to six pieces.

Your child will also be able to draw circles using crayons. They’ll be able to open doors as well as open and close jar lids.

Buy your child more sophisticated toys with buttons and livers as they learn. This will teach them new skills.

Communication Skills 

When your kid is 3 years old, you’ll see significant developments in their communication skills. For instance, they’ll be able to recognize and name familiar objects around them.

Some of the words your baby will say are “we”, “me”, “you”, “I” etc. They’ll also show the ability to understand plurals. For instance, they will now say “cats”, “cars” etc as well as the singular.

When asked, your child will be able to tell you their name, age, and gender. It’s quite normal for three olds to use short sentences of two to three words. They’ll also be able to follow instructions to accomplish a task.

Important Read: Research Says Children Inherit Intelligence From Their Mothers

Emotional Development Of 3-Year-Olds

Emotional Development Of 3-Year-Olds

At the age of three, you’ll see your little angel becoming more and more eager for independence. But at the same time, they also show frustration when it comes to doing something all by themselves.

This is because your child is still very much used to depending on you for everything. Your little one will have very limited control over the emotions that they experience at this age. But don’t worry, 3-year-olds will let you know loud and clear if they are happy or sad. 

Additional Read: 6 Top Parenting Tips from Harvard Psychologists

Other Milestones Of 3-Year-Olds

Other Milestones Of 3-Year-Olds

Besides physical, cognitive, social and emotional milestones, you’ll need to focus on your kid’s food habits as well.

Food Habits

Your 3-year-old should be able to eat small pieces of chicken and beef as well as eggs and tuna.

You can also give them mashed up fruit and vegetables. For carbohydrates, try giving them rice cakes, puddings, and pasta.

Whole Grain toast and baked beans are often a favorite food of 3 and 4-year-olds. Try this snack out with your child to see if they like it. 

A Few Important Things to Remember

Not all children develop at the same pace. However, there are certain issues that you should keep an eye out for as your baby reaches the 3-year mark:

  • Your kid’s speech is very unclear
  • Not being able to construct simple sentences
  • Not being able to follow very simple instructions
  • Not making eye contact
  • Losing certain skills that they once had
  • Limited  social skills or no interest in playing with other kids

If you notice any of the above-mentioned issues in your child, make sure to take them to a child specialist as soon as possible. 

Also Read: Top 9 Vegetarian Foods for Hair Growth


A 3-year-old child is expected to be playful and interactive. They are exploring new things and gradually adopting new skills and behavior.

They are now running all over the house and jumping up and down. They are copying your gestures and posture. They are enriching their vocabulary very quickly by listening to you and the people around them.

So embrace the antics of your child at this age but keep them under close supervision. Allow your child ’s imagination to run wild. But at the same time slowly teach them what is acceptable and unacceptable behavior.

Encourage your little one to play with other kids, share their toys and make peace. Some children take a little time to show progress so be patient and supportive.

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