Some Characteristics of a Three Year Old

  1. Enjoys gross motor activity – running, jumping, playing with balls, etc.
  2. Builds a tower of nine or ten cubes.
  3. Likes to use crayons and is interested in finer manipulation of play materials.
  4. Has vocabulary that is increasing at a remarkable rate.
  5. Asks many pointless questions that are part of the developmental mechanism for achieving speech.
  6. Has a strong desire to please.
  7. If requested, will do little errands.
  8. Begins to understand what it means to wait one’s turn.
  9. Will share toys.
  10. Can feed self.
  11. Gets over tantrums more quickly than at an earlier age.
  12. Has longer spans of interest in listening to stories.
  13. Insists on stories being retold and reread word for word without change.           These are just some of the many characteristics of a three year old. Many children at this age will demonstrate most of these traits but there will be some that are ahead as well as some children that are far behind. We need to take a look at these children and see what we can do to provide opportunities to enhance and enrich their development.

Homemade Pretzels

Ingredients: Buy 1-2 cans biscuit dough(depending on number of people eating it)(found in the refrigerated section). Beaten egg yolk, coarse salt.

Procedure: Give each child two pieces of dough and have them shape it into a pretzel. They also could make it the shape of their inital. Brush with beaten egg yolk and sprinkle with coarse salt. Bake as directed on the package.

Before baking the pretzels, put parchment paper down on the baking sheet. You can write their names down by their creations so you know whose pretzel is whose.

If you want a sweeter version, spread melted butter on top, and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Bake as directed on the package.

Stuffed Animal Parade

You can have a stuffed animal parade with one child or twenty children or any number in between. When I use to own a preschool we would have a stuffed animal parade day. The children were able to bring their favorite stuffed animal.

The children can share with others about what they brought. They could also talk about the different kinds of stuffed animals as well as various sizes.

The children could make hats for their stuffed animals and also themselves. Prior to this, collect some boxes that the children could put their stuffed animals in and parade around the house or class. The boxes can also be decorated. You can also use wagons or strollers to pull the stuffed animals around in.

Potato Faces

This is a fun activity that the children can do.

Materials: 1 potato per child, grass seeds, container or cup to hold potato

Procedure: Cut the top off of a potato and hollow out about 1/4 inch down. Have the children sprinkle grass seed in the hollowed part. Set upright for 3-4 days. The potato will soon have a growth of green “hair”. The children may then decorate a face. The moisture in the potato waters the grass.

Olympic Playday

With the summer olympics coming in August it might be fun to have your own olympic playday. I did this a number of years ago when I did family day care and also when I was a preschool teacher.

What is an olympic playday? It is a day or afternoon/morning where you plan some activities for the children to do. You can do it with your family or invite some friends over with their children to join in the fun.

Decide on a day that you want to do it. Do you want to have it at your house or go to a park? Decide what activities you want the children to do – ball throw, jump(see how far they can jump), bean bag toss, running, make an obstacle course, and anything else you and the children can think of. Let them practice the week before.

Talk with the children about the olympics coming up and what kind of events are in it. Plan on watching an event or two. Talk about the difference between the summer and winter olympics.

Make ribbons/medals for the different events. What other events can you add for an olympics playday?