Preschool milestones are when the developmental skills learned in the first few years of life become more refined.
Kids make SO many rapid developmental gains in the few short years between birth and preschool. Between the ages of 3 and 5, children refine skills like balance and coordination and they become a lot more confident too. Here’s what to expect regarding preschool milestones.
Preschool Milestones: Ages 3 to 5
Gross Motor Skills
During this period, your child will become proficient at climbing stairs. She will now be able to go up and down with one foot on each step and will probably be able to do it without holding on as she approaches the end of preschool.
She will be able to stand on one foot for longer periods of time without swaying and leaning all over the place and may even hop, gallop and skip!
Ball skills will improve dramatically, with throwing and kicking becoming much more forceful and accurate and with a bit more coordination between the arms and legs (this is where “step and throw” comes into play).
She may be proficient at pedaling and steering a tricycle and may even be ready to progress to learning to ride a bicycle. Swing sets are tons of fun at this age and not just for swinging but for climbing, hanging upside down, and sliding!
Fine Motor Skills
Your child’s fine motor skills are progressing like crazy too at this age. She will have a better grasp on crayons and pencils, working her way toward a tripod grasp.
She will be able to copy simple lines, shapes, and letters and will start to show more accuracy with coloring in the lines. By 5 years old, your child has likely settled on hand dominance and can write her name accurately and independently. She will also start to copy other letters of the alphabet from a model.
Using scissors is no longer a challenge, as older preschoolers and newer kindergarteners are now able to cut on curved lines and can even cut out simple shapes without going off the line!
Kids this age are able to complete all dressing skills and clothing fasteners (buttons and zippers) with little or no assistance, making getting ready in the morning a breeze compared to those toddler years!
Learn more about developmental milestones for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers!
Gross Motor Activities for Preschoolers
The possibilities for gross motor activities for preschoolers are endless – but we’ve rounded up a few of our favorites here. Try one (or more) of these fun ways to get moving with your 3 to 5-year-old while also supporting preschool development!
Fine Motor Activities for Preschoolers
Fine motor activities for preschoolers are so much fun because kids have slightly longer attention spans and can be more independent than our younger toddler friends. Learn more about fine motor activities to support preschool development.
Sensory Activities for Preschoolers
There is no easier way to get a preschooler’s attention than with an awesome sensory play activity. They love to explore using their senses and by this age, they have the vocabulary and cognitive skills to make some real connections about the world around them as they engage in sensory play.
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When is it safe to allow kids to hang upside down by the knees at the climbers? I was shocked to see he could do it “dad taught me”…of course!) and as a physio myself I know the importance of play but I also guard anxiously as I see a fall and spinal cord injury resulting. Should it be discouraged until a certain age or just spotted well? Thanks!
Hello there says
hm My daughter has been using a tripod grip since she was just turned 2 years old(shes still two but will turn 3 in nov)
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