Preschoolers are constantly on the move, exploring their world with enthusiasm, curiosity and a seemingly endless source of energy.   A child’s ability to learn at this stage is enormous.  Preschool aged children learn and develop from every experience, relationship, and adventure they encounter.   Playing is learning.  Having the space and opportunity to play helps preschool children develop their imaginations and skills for future development.

Listed below are some things that children do by a certain age.  Remember, no two children develop, grow or learn in the same way, or do things at the same pace.  If you are concerned about your child’s growth, development or learning, we encourage you to contact your doctor, a public health nurse or the BC Nurses Help Line (811).

3 to 4 Years Old

3 Years Old

  • Can be toilet trained during the day, and usually stays dry during the night
  • Uses 3 to 4 word sentences
  • Pedals a bike and kicks a ball
  • Can “draw”
  • Names 6 body parts
  • Plays briefly with other children
  • Sometimes expresses feelings with words
  • Thinks about feelings of others
  • Uses imagination to create stories and play activities
  • Shifts emotions quickly
  • Pays attention for up to 8 or 9 minutes

4 Years Old

  • Plays make believe
  • Dresses herself
  • Puts together a simple puzzle
  • Climbs up and down a slide
  • Identifies some colours
  • Retells favourite stories
  • Has favourite activities and playmates
  • Understands simple rules
  • Shares and takes turns but may be possessive of favourite toys
  • Begins to control frustration
  • Starts to understand danger
  • Follows 3-step directions
  • Uses 4 to 5 word sentences
Click  Stages of Development Links  for more information on child development and other valuable parenting information.