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What to Expect During the Third Year of your Baby’s Life


By Gopi K.Patel MSE.d Special Educator


The time between the 3rd and 4th year is when we see the terrible two’s going away (hopefully…)!! This really is a fun time for the little ones as they are beginning to better express themselves through words. They start to form likes/dislikes for things. Three year olds are a lot of fun to be with as they begin to sound a lot like little person, and at times can be brutally honest (& always at the wrong times). At the same time they are so young and innocent in their own way.


Gopi’s Milestone-Basics:

At this age children have acquired about 800 words. They are better able to follow 2 step directions. Children at this age are able to answer how-to questions and are beginning to recall past events. They are cooperatively able to play, and begin to share. Play at this age is a lot of fun to watch as they begin to pretend to use one object to represent another, and even can pretend to be another person. They recognize a variety of shapes, colors, letters and numbers. They can build objects from pictures. The most amazing thing to see this early on is that your 3 year old may be able to tell jokes!!!


Some of Gopi’s Favorite Toys for 3 year olds:

  1. Sandwich Making Set – Kids can use their imagination, and this toy is easy to hold in their hands, and can include others in the play.
  2. Snails Pace Race – A great game for 3 year olds (and the family) to play. It’s a wonderful, non-competitive game to introduce 3 year olds to.
  3. Number Memory Game – A great interactive game to sharpen a 3 year olds , cognitive skills with great visual recognition of numbers.
  4. Color Me Floor Puzzle – First and foremost, these pieces are nice and big and easy to grab. This is so much fun as this puzzle taps into fine motor skills as well, and can keep the little ones busy for a while.
  5. Chalet Dollhouse with Furniture – This beautifully made doll-house really sparks the imagination (and 3 years is a great age to introduce this toy). Kids are really learning to pretend and what a great way to act-out the home.

If you liked this article, you may also want to read our other developmental articles:


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Guidelines for Summer Activities Gopi K. Patel, MSE.d
Learning Through Movement… A Sensory-Rich Way to Help Children Barbara Greenspan, OT
Five Elements of Successfully Disciplining Your Toddler Andy Eig, PhD.
Preventing Family Headaches Andy Eig, PhD.

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Play is A Lot More Than Fun and Games Shari Harpaz, MS, CCC-SLP
Understanding Your Child's Personality Gopi K. Patel, MSE.d
Nursemaid's Elbow Deanie Barth, MSPT
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Getting to Know Your Body Barbara Greenspan, OT
Learning to Read Starts Young Shari Harpaz, MS, CCC-SLP
It’s All In The Hands - Ways to Develop Fine Motor Skills Barbara Greenspan, OT
Understanding the Different Modes/Styles of Learning Shari Harpaz, MS, CCC-SLP
Achieving Gross Motor Milestones and Play Skills Through Summer Time Fun Deanie Barth, MSPT
Help With Grandparents Andy Eig, PhD.
Helicopter Parenting Barbara Greenspan, OT
Eye-Hand Coordination Barbara Greenspan, OT
Five Major Milestones for Early Physical Development Deanie Barth, MSPT
It's All About the Core Deanie Barth, MSPT
Using Time Outs Properly and Effectively Andy Eig, PhD.
Making Room for Two Andy Eig, PhD.
Giving is MORE than Toys Gopi K. Patel, MSE.d
Using the  5  7 Senses Barbara Greenspan, OT
Have You Spanked Your Children? Gopi K. Patel, MSE.d
What to Expect During the Sixth Year of Your Baby's Life Gopi K. Patel, MSE.d
What to Expect During the Third Year of Your Baby's Life Gopi K. Patel, MSE.d
What to Expect During the Second Year of Your Baby's Life Barbara Greenspan, OT
What to Expect During the First Year of Your Baby's Life Deanie Barth, MSPT
Psychiatric Medication and Young Children: Is there too much pill popping? Andy Eig, PhD.
Exersaucers, Swings and Jumpers— A help or hindrance to development? Deanie Barth, MSPT
Technology — A Chief Culprit in Language Delays Shari Harpaz, MS, CCC-SLP
Great Indoor Winter Play Ideas Barbara Greenspan, OT