What Do You Teach a 3 Year Old?

Updated on March 27, 2008
S.M. asks from Worland, WY
6 answers

I'm looking for things and ways to teach my three year old, both academic and not. I just need some ideas to get me going.

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answers from Colorado Springs on

When my daughter was three, we bought an atlas, a childrens dictionary, a children's encyclopedia, ect. Kids really want to know about everything. I just listened to the questions my daughter was asking, and taught her based on what she wanted to know. The encyclopedia was as much for me as it is for my kids because when I didnt know the answer to a question we could look it up together. Also, just keep your eyes open and you will be amazed at what you see. If your son is looking at an ant hill, then you can tell him about ants. We really like Insectlore.com, which is a place where you can get caterpillars which turn into butterfly's (we even bought an anthill). Making tracer pages with simple shapes is a good way to get children ready to begin writting letters. Uhm...animal flash cards and letters and numbers were a lot of fun too. Keep it light and fun, and then you will be amazed at what he learns simply by talking with him...Good luck!

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answers from Denver on

There's great books in the library. One is something like "What Your Kindergartener Should Know" and another is something like "How to Prepare for Kindergarten". Letter recognition seems to be big in preschools as well as number recognition. Our son learned our phone numbers, including area code. He's now working on Grandma's number. I think he knew address, too, before we moved. We did police and fire station tours and such so that he was familiar with emergency staff and their uniforms. We also do lots of museums. Depending on what you like, it's sometimes more economical to join as a visit usually lasts an hour, so you don't get much. I'm amazed at what kids can learn at a museum! Have fun and he'll love learning whatever you teach him!

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answers from Pocatello on

I teach preschool to 3-5yr. olds and it is a great time in their lives. They are being introduced to so many new people and experiences! I think one of the most important things you can teach your children is a love of learning, and how much fun it is to learn something new. Read to your child! That is so important. Reading together expands their vocabulary, helps with focus/attention span, teaches rhythm and rhyming, and all kinds of other topics. Most importantly it shows your child that learning is important to you, and you care about what they are interested in. Art & music are great ways to teach other skills. Make projects and sing songs about other skills/topics you are learning. Assemble an art box with supplies that they can use: child scissors, crayons, a glue stick, coloring books, old magazines, etc. Talk about shapes and colors of things in your home and other surroundings. Cook together and let your child help mix & measure. It also helps with motor skills. Play together - build with blocks, do puzzles, tell stories, use your imagination. Ask questions and talk to him about things you see and do. Look for places in your community you can visit to introduce your child to new people and experiences. (In our preschool we have classroom visitors and field trips throughout the year.) We teach about letters and their sounds, numbers & counting, writing, healthy habits, safety, good manners, animals & nature, seasons, days of the week, the topics are endless! Make learning fun! A lot of this may seem obvious, but you'd be surprised how many parents forget how important the little things are. Feel free to contact me if you would like websites etc. for more ideas.
(Our family has dealt with many severe health challenges as well. I wish you all the best in getting back to "normal" life again. It sounds like you are a very strong woman.)

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answers from Pocatello on

Well, I have been a prek teacher for almost 20 years and these are the skills we work on mostly:
fine motor skills-cutting, pouring, building, lacing
gross motor skills-hopping, jumping, skipping, throwing, kicking
Social skills-sharing,caring, potty training, toy pick up

And we sing and read a lot! Spending time with your child, letting them explore independance, and pointing out/explaining everything to them is the best thing you can do.
Good luck- Let me know if you need more ideas.

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answers from Denver on

I think that you should start to teach 3 year olds colors, shapes, letters. My childs doctor said that my 3 year old should also be taught his address and phone number.

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answers from Denver on

Hey S.,
I am a mother of 6 year old twins and a retired nanny and preschool teacher. Three is such a fun age. Kids are such natural learners. Check out www.dltk-kids.com. They have great pre-writting skills work sheets as well as crafts and letter, shape, number, and color recognition worksheets,all for free. Skills like holding a pencil correctly and using scissors correctly are important fine motor skills for 3 year olds. Begining to trace and write his first name is also a great way to learn. The public libraries also have great science and social studies resources for little ones. Take anything he is interested in to the next level with books, internet sites, and field trips to museums, the library, ect. Lakeshore Learning Store is another great resource.
Happy Learning,

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