Your 3-4 year old has become an independent person, dressing themselves, playing on their own and going to pre-school. It’s crazy to think they were once tiny babies. Here’s what to expect and some suggested products to help their development and add fun to the ride.

But whhhhy?

By now your 3-4 year old is talking in proper sentences and has become aware of things around them. Eager to learn, they’ll be asking a lot of questions so get ready for the whys. ‘Why is the sky blue?’, ‘Why is that stone shiny?’... You get the idea. It’s all part of their cognitive development. Embrace their inquisitiveness by introducing them to storybooks that teach them about the world around them.

Thames and Hudson Hello, London!

Thames and Hudson Hello, London!

It’s time to wake up… or not

At this age, they're probably in a toddler or single bed, meaning they’ll be free to run into your room whenever they want. Hello 5am starts! Not cool, not cool. You may also have some night time visitors as their active imaginations make bad dreams more likely. Save your sleep (and sanity) by buying a nightlight that emits a soft glow and keeps those ‘monsters’ at bay. Alternatively, make it double duty and go for a sleep trainer clock. Perfect for kids who can’t tell the time, these have displays with a moon to indicate sleep time and a sun when it's time to get up.

Mr Maria Miffy Original Lamp

Mr Maria Miffy Original Lamp

Prepping for pre-school

Wow, they’re off to pre-school. It's a big step and you're both bound to have a mix of excitement and nerves. Although the emotions may be a little bit all over the place, make sure the prep isn’t. Invest in a kids’ bag that will hold all their pre-school kit such as a lunch box and change of clothes. If you're walking to pre-school bikes and scooters may save those moans of, ‘my legs are tired’. For more ways to prep them, and you, for this time, check out our 7 tips to prep for pre-school.

monbento Tresor Kids Bento Box

monbento Tresor Kids Bento Box

Independent play

By now, your 3-4 year old has grasped the concept of imaginative and creative play. They’ll probably start needing a little bit more stimulation, so step up their playtime. Give them games such as balancing and story games, that encourage thinking and continue to help develop their mobility skills. Or, ramp up their creativity with playsets that really get their imagination flowing.

Jabadabado Car Racing

Jabadabado Car Racing

My first playdate

Once they're into the full swing of pre-school, you may find them asking to have their new best friend over. Playdates aren't only a good way to keep them occupied, but they're all-but-essential for their social skills too. Don’t panic - there are loads of ways to keep them entertained. Art and Crafts are a great option for quiet, creative fun when you've got two in tow. Alternatively, roll out the dress-up products and let them have some creative play time. #yourewelcome.

Balance it up

Your 3-4 year old’s balance has really improved now and they’re hopping and skipping around. Fun times. Now’s the time to introduce them to a balance bike. These feature handlebars, a seat, but no pedals or chains. Designed to help novice riders use their feet to propel themselves forwards and sideways while still on a saddle, they build steering skills and strengthen their sense of balance.

Banwood First Go Balance Bike

Banwood First Go Balance Bike

The great kids’ bedroom switch up

With their personalities really coming through, now’s probably a good time to think about redecorating their room to give it a bit more of a grown up feel. Don’t panic, you won’t need to be grabbing those paintbrushes. Just pick some wall decor such as wall stickers or prints, and team with accessories and feature rugs.

Engel Bunting

Engel Bunting

And a last little note…

We’ve put together a comprehensive list of all the best products for your 3-4 year old. You can find them by popping over to our Shop by Stage: 3-4 year old collection.

And one more thing before you go. Remember, it's not a race and every child develops at at their own pace. If they’re not quite at this stage, head back to our buying guide for 2-3 year olds. They'll get there, in their own good time!