Happy Birthday! It’s hard to believe that your child is now 3 years old! You have watched her amazing growth and development over the last three years in wonder. Now, you see before you a preschool child who is ready to take on the world.
Your Child’s Development
When your child turns three she will begin to understand how others feell. That’s right: she will have empathy. She will feel bad if she takes another child’s toy. She will also know when you are sad and may even ask you why you are sad.
Your toddler will also have the ability to pretend when she plays. This is such an important aspect of childhood. Pretending teaches a child about the world around them. It also gives the opportunity to solve problems. You may notice that your 3 year olds pretend play mimics everyday happenings in her own life. When she puts her teddy bear in time-out because he was bad, it helps her to understand situations and learn cause and effect.
Your toddler has advanced greatly in the speech department. She can now speak much clearer and uses connecting words when forming sentences. Instead of saying, “Me go bye-bye”, she now says, “I want to go bye-bye.” Additionally, your child is now carrying on meaningful conversations with you.
Gross motor skills are greatly developed as well. Your toddler is very agile now and can run, jump, do somersaults, and even ride a tricycle. She can throw and kick a football while maintaining her balance and has enough coordination to catch a ball and skip.
Her fine motor skills are still developing, but your toddler is much better at putting toys together, holding a crayon, eating with a fork and spoon, and even putting on her own clothes and shoes. Within the next twelve months, your toddler will become much more coordinated when using her hands and fingers.
Physically, your child now has all of her baby teeth but her jaw will continue to grow wider in order to accommodate her permanent teeth, which will start to come in around the age of 5 or 6. You will also notice that your child’s facial features have become more distinct now and less ‘baby looking’. This is due to her face growing in length. In fact, many babies start out resembling one parent for the first couple of years, and as their facial features change, they suddenly resemble the other parent.
Your child’s growth has been astounding over the last twelve months. She has grown about 5cm (2 inches) taller in the last year. Her weight has also increased around 2.3 kg (5 pounds) since she turned 2. An average 3 year old weighs 15kg (33 pounds) and is nearly 84cm (33 inches) tall. Of course, these numbers are the average height and weight taken from a standard height and weight ratio chart. Your child’s height and weight is probably above or below these numbers.