Eating meals together as a family has many benefits. Mealtime is a great time to let your child tell you about her interests, concerns, and worries. This helps your child to listen and to feel heard Encourage your child to talk and to listen to others as they share stories and experiences. This helps your child to learn new words, and keeps your family feeling close and connected. Don’t have the TV on during family meals.
You can model healthy eating by what you eat and how much you eat. Serve healthy snacks like cheese, fruit, and yogurt. Avoid junk foods and soda pop.
Your child should be feeding herself completely on her own now. If you are having problems at mealtime, ask your child’s healthcare provider for advice.
At this age it is normal for your child to want to do things by herself. Patience and encouragement will help your 3-year-old develop new skills and build self-confidence.
Your child will learn reading skills while watching you read. She will start to figure out that printed symbols have certain meanings. Your child will want to participate with you and will make comments, ask questions, and point things out while you read.
Set rules about media use. Know what kinds of apps and games your child uses, and what they are doing online. Limit how much time your child spends using computers, tablets, TV, videos, and other electronics. Don’t let your child watch shows with violence or sex. Play video games, read, or watch TV with your child and communicate with your child while you do. Children need physical play and face-to-face conversation to stay healthy and learn language and social skills. Having a TV, computer, or video game in your child's bedroom increases your child's risk for obesity, sleep disorders, and attention problems. Your child needs time to unplug and recharge. Participate in active play with your child, and be a role model by limiting your own use of technology.
Many 3-year-olds still need diapers during the day or night. Avoid putting too many demands on your child or shaming him about wearing diapers. Let your child know how proud and happy you are as he learns how to use the toilet.
Here are some good ways to help your child learn about rules:
Don’t send your child to their room for time-outs. A bedroom should not feel like a place of punishment.
Talk to your child’s healthcare provider if you have questions about discipline or need help with behavior problems.
It’s important to take care of your child’s baby teeth because they help your child chew food and speak clearly. They also help save space for the permanent teeth that will come in later. You can help care for your child’s teeth by following these tips:
Traffic and Tricycle Safety
Fires and Burns
Immunizations protect your child against several serious, life-threatening diseases. Your child should get a flu shot every year. Your child’s healthcare provider will let you know if your child is up to date on all recommended vaccinations. Be sure to bring your child's shot record to all visits with your provider.
A routine checkup every year is recommended.