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3 years 10 months old

Katie de Klee
How your pre-schooler will grow and develop, what changes to be aware of, and some great tips for the month ahead.
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What’s happening now:
  • Imaginary fears.
  • More logical when playing games.
  • Elaborate stories.
  • Quiet time in the afternoon.
How your pre-schooler is developing:
Your child may be developing fears of imaginary monsters or enemies. We are all born with fears and then we learn to understand them, but children at this age have particularly vivid imaginations. Pre-schoolers will be very aware of their parent’s emotions and if you show fear they may too. However, a small child’s fears can also be completely irrational. The irrational fears of the night-time are countered by the increasingly logical way your child goes about playing games these days. They will be much better at puzzles and educational games as they can approach the problem in a rational way, and see how to solve it.

Tips for you this month:
The best way to help your child deal with fears is to be sympathetic. Whatever you do, don’t laugh at them or tell them they’re being silly. Listen to their fears, tell them that you understand and explain gently why the situation is better than it seems (monsters can’t get past the magic spell you’ve put on the front door, for example). You can also try to arm them with ways to combat their fears. For example, you can fill a water bottle with lavender scented water and label it “monster spray” so that they can protect themselves.

The upside of this vivid imagination is that you will be told many elaborate stories, often about the day’s events. Pre-schoolers translate the world through talking about it, so try to be as patient as possible when you’re hearing the story, even if you were actually there the whole time. Your child will probably stop napping in the afternoon as they reach the age of four. Having a quiet time in the afternoon is still a great idea, though – encourage them to look at books or play quietly so that they aren’t too hyped up for the evening.

This month’s To Do list:
  • Find a monster-proofing trick.
  • Go on an afternoon trip somewhere your child has never been.
  • Ask your child to narrate a story and turn it into their very own book (illustrated by them, of course). 
If you have 5 minutes…
Mom’s top tip.
Have you been cooking with your child yet? Get them to help you make and decorate some biscuits – as long as you do all the hard work…

Curious about next month? 
Click here to find out what happens next month… And the month after.

Share your thoughts and concerns
Chat with other Moms in your area or at the same developmental stage as you in BabyGroup Forums. 

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