Your Four Year Old - Development Guide



  • still plays alone most of the time
  • is only concerned with self
  • is concerned with “doing”



  • has “we” feeling with mother; is on his or her own sometimes
  • likes to act out “baby-like” ways
  • does small chores around the house



  • begins to take advice or listens to your opinion
  • makes more contacts with adults; likes to imitate parents
  • begins to make friends and notices others in-group who are not their friend
  • friendships last for a short amount of time




  • child finds it hard to cut, tie and color “in the lines” (do not force any of these activities if the child is not ready)
  • growth begins to slow down and appetite is less; feeds self (slowly) and tends to play with food
  • runs. Jumps, hops on one foot, climbs stairs
  • dresses and undresses self somewhat, but still wants and asks for help
  • walks on a balance beam, ride a tricycle
  • stands on one foot for a short time
  • enjoys listening and dancing to music
  • is a great “doer”


Emotional and Social

  • needs routine (same people, same activities, and same times, this makes child feel safe)
  • begins to test how far they can “push” others
  • can begin to make choices
  • plays with modeling clay, blocks, and art materials
  • likes to “act things out” (dramatize)


Intellectual and Language

  • understands language and can follow directions more easily
  • learns counting by memory and some letters



  • depends on the family to provide role models for self-esteem, sense of safeness, family values and goals and how to control anger and aggression, (They are watching you, be a good example for your children)