The age of three is a big deal, especially when it comes to becoming a grown-up human. We have asked Dr. Roberta Golinkoff, the author of Becoming Brilliant: What Science Tells Us About Raising Successful Children, and the expert who helped us create the list of the best choice toys for 2-year-olds and 4-year-olds, about this important period in children’s life. She states that at the age of three kids are already real people and have their own personalities. Since the language has already come in, kids are able to express their feeling and get involved in real communication with their parents, people they do not know, and even with people they do not see by using the telephone. Her colleague, Dr. George Sachs, who is a clinical child psychologist with a private medical practice in New York, agrees and adds that kids of this age group can initiate conversations, form simple phrases and sentences, as well as talk about things that bother or interest them.
According to Dr. Sachs, kids are also developing and advancing emotionally and start making real friends. Therefore, he encourages parents and caregivers to stimulate children’s curiosity, and to promote the expansion of interaction with peers as well. Even though the child will need help, parents should encourage independent behavior and thinking, and, at the same time foster fine motor and physical abilities. While developing their confidence in how they interact with the surrounding world, kids will keep asking thousands of “why questions” due to their new sense of what they do not know yet and what they would like to find out. Together with our consultants, we have made a list of 11 presents for 3-year-olds that will help them to explore and discover the world around them. Also, check out our gift suggestions for kids of different age groups, including 1-year-olds, 2-year-olds, 4-year-olds, 5-year-olds, 6-year-olds, 7-year-olds, 8-year-olds, 9-year-olds, 10-year-olds, and 11-year-olds.
Just in case you are searching for holidays toys, we have talked to specialists to indicate the 2018’s best items for you. So, take a look at the top kid’s toys to buy before they sell out. In addition, here you can find all of the Strategist’s holiday gift offers.
As Dr. Sachs states, physically 3-year-old children are capable of walking and running without too much tripping. Kids begin to catch and throw back the ball and can even start some tricycle riding. He also adds that outdoor games help kids to get a feeling of being energized. Moving games and exercising help children to improve and develop their physical abilities, not mentioning that they are simply beneficial for their health. Buy this balance bike for your child and he will get riding a regular bike in no time.
As an option, your kid can try this mini-scooter to get around as fast as you do. According to Golinkoff, children learn from everything they do. And that is great, because kids take some little risks, as well as learn to use their bodies and practice moving in deferent manners. So, if you keep your kids away from taking little risks he is not going to be creative. When little children are using their bodies – wonderful and amazing things come from them. Therefore, we want to encourage them to play active games to find out how fun physical activities can be.
Another Sachs’s recommendation is to encourage kids to build together by creating new structures with building blocks. This Mega Blocks set of 80 pieces can be applied for Legos of a smaller size as training wheels. Due to their portability, these building blocks are perfect for sharing with friends and taking them on the go.
Golinkoff really likes this Play-Doh, which can be fashioned and refashioned. Kids learn through feelings. At their age, children are learning about textures of different objects and how they tactile feel. Their creative agency is constantly working and they can turn a piece of Play-Doh into a spider, or into a bear, or anything else they think it is supposed to be. And even if it doesn’t look like a spider at all – do not tell your kid about that. Just ask something like “Oh, what is that?” and let your little one explain it to you. This set comes with 20 pieces of five major classic colors.
While developing their language skills children begin to perceive and understand basic grammar rules, says Sachs. For example, they may know that most plural words end with an “s”. However, they cannot comprehend more complexed rules yet. Therefore, a 3-year-old kid may say “mouses” instead of “mice”. Sachs strongly recommends reading books together with your child, because it can further improve his language skills. This classic book by Eric Carle will definitely please any 3-year-old kid. And, while you are reading let your kid turn over the pages by himself.
To get a new surprise every month we recommend you to get an annual subscription to High Five magazine, published by Highlights. This magazine is always full of different hidden picture games, as well as puzzles for kids from 2 to 6 years of age. As Golinkoff says, her kids loved it, now her grandchildren enjoy it, and they can play with it for hours. She adds that kids like things that are silly, and they will always look out for them. Moreover, at this age they are old enough to go to the library with their parents and pick a book they want, since they know what books are and how they look like, as well as what kinds of pictures are interesting and attractive to them.
Another perfect developmental tool for kids of this age group are board games. Sachs says, that they teach your kid sharing, taking turns, dealing with frustration after losing the game. This bestselling board game assumes that kids need to use squirrel tongs to collect different colored acorns, and requires sorting and matching skills, as well as strategic thinking.
If you are looking for something more challenging check out this award-winning MightyMind game. As the producers of this game claim, it makes kids smarter by teaching them to build and solve complex puzzles.
Our next suggestion is this solar system puzzle. When it comes to puzzles, Golinkoff recommends to start with easy ones and gradually increase the number of pieces. When kids are familiar with the words like “over”, “under”, through”, “next to”, and “beside” it stimulates the understanding of various spatial tasks, as well as correlates with mathematical abilities. Definitely, puzzles can be really helpful in learning and understanding the spatial concept. Both experts recommend following your kid’s hints and cues and encouraging them to try fitting pieces by themselves, rather than doing it for them. Golinkoff adds that parents should not tell their children what to do – give them helpful advice instead. For example, if your child is struggling with some puzzle piece something like “try turning it” would be very encouraging and stimulating.
Golinkoff recommends not forgetting about various baby dolls and stuffed animals, which little kids love a lot for their ability to create a fantasy around them. Very often, while playing a game, children pretend that they are putting themselves in someone else’s shoes. The imaginary alternative reality – isn’t that just great and amazing? It means that kids are no longer limited by here and now, therefore, they can come to understanding abstract ideas and concepts. And it’s okay, if you get a doll for your boy, because your son will eventually become a father, and babies must be as natural for him as they should be for little girls.
Another suggestion of great toys for kids are these dinosaurs that can easily turn into trucks. As Golinkoff says, her kids loved Transformers. Dinosaurs are good for both boys and girls, as they are perfect for make-believe games. She recommends purchasing a floor mat that looks like a grass field, desert, or highway. For make-believe games with these kinds of toys such a background are ideal encouragement and stimulation.