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Developmental Milestones: 3-4 Years Old

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This checklist is a general guideline, please remember that all children develop at different rates. Use this resource to discuss strengths and goals when working with a teacher, child specialist, or educational nanny in the home.


Frequently: 90% of the time

Usually: 75% of the time

Occasionally: 25% of the time

Rarely: less than 10% of the time




Large Motor Development
Runs smoothly?
Climbs easily?
Jumps with two feet?
Balances briefly?
Walks downstairs (1 at a time?)
Throws ball purposefully?

Language Development
Articulates clearly?
Verbalizes needs?
Understands/follows directions?
Converses (short sentences/simple ideas?)
Uses plurals?

Social Development

Play beside with sustained interest?
Uses language to interact with others?
Approaches other children?
Interacts with other children?
Involves self in group activities and routines?
Accepts limits set by adults?
Separates from parent easily?

Responsibility/Self-Help Skills

Puts on shoes and crosses laces?
Dresses self for outdoors?
Makes own choice of free play activities?
Uses toys appropriately?
Helps to clean up?
Toilet trained?
Uses toilet without help?
Mealtime independence?
Washes hands competently?

Small Motor Development
Left/Right switches?
Accurately cuts lines/shapes with scissors?
Exhibits well-developed hand-eye coordination (stringing, lacing small Manipulative toys)?
Copies circle?
Builds tower?

Cognitive Development

Points and counts 1-5?
Compares size (big or little)?
Identifies forms as visually “same” or “different?”
Recognizes first name written in upper and lower case?
Knows first and last name?
Knows colors (red, blue, green, yellow, orange, purple, brown, black, and white)?

Emotional Development
Approaches new situation calmly and comfortably?
Verbalizes feelings?
Controls aggressive behavior?
Appears relaxed/at ease in the preschool setting?