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4 years-5 years

Tips and Milestones

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  What are some common milestones for a 4-year-old?

Four-year-olds are energetic and imaginative. They learn new words quickly and will use them!

Common milestones:

  • Climbs and jumps
  • Does self-care such as feeding self, brushing teeth, and unbuttoning clothing
  • Asks and answers who, what, when, where, and why  questions
  • Continues an activity for 10-15 minutes
  • Recognizes some letters and words
  • Speaks fairly complex sentences such as "The baby ate the cookie before I could put it on the table."
  • Likes to talk and sing simple songs
  • Enjoys showing off
  • Likes taking turns and sharing but may get bossy

From Iowa State University Extension and Outreach

  What tips are there for working with a 4-year-old?

Four-year-olds have a strong need to feel important and appreciated — so notice their accomplishments!

  • Set up opportunities for children to do routine activities independently and to make choices.
  • Encourage physical development by including gross motor activities daily in your plans.
  • Read aloud every day and encourage your child to help in retelling the story.

From Iowa State University Extension and Outreach

  What are some common milestones for a 5-year-old?

A five-year-old is enthusiastic and energetic. Fives enjoy planning and discussing who will do what. A "best friend" is very important but hard to keep as social skills are not well developed yet.

Common milestones:

  • Loses baby teeth
  • Uses a fork and spoon well
  • Has a stronger memory with ability to memorize address and favorite stories
  • Has expanding vocabulary
  • Plays board games and card games and with blocks and puzzles (12-15 pieces)
  • Enjoys telling stories and jokes
  • Understands and respects rules — often asks permission
  • Likes to try new things

From Iowa State University Extension and Outreach

   What are some tips for working with a 5-year-old?

Ideas to encourage a five-year-old's development:

  • Ask "what if" questions and explain why and how things happen.
  • Ask your child to tell a story.
  • Have play dates with other children and teach your child how to negotiate, request, bargain, and apologize.
  • Help children understand and cope with strong feelings by giving them words to use when they are angry.
  • Involve children in writing notes, letters, and cards.

Highlight Videos


LANGUAGE/COMMUNICATION

Four-year-olds

Additional milestone resources can be found at cdc.gov.

 

Five-year-olds

Additional milestone resources can be found at cdc.gov.

 

Play is the way!

Used with permission from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, Office of Early Learning, https://dpi.wi.gov/early-childhood/office-of-early-learning

Contacts

Early Learning Manager:

Krissy Washington
Phone: 414-475-8094
Fax: 414-475-8737

Early Childhood Supervisor/
Achievement Gap Reduction:

Allison Foyer
Phone: 414-475-8673
Fax: 414-475-8737

Head Start Program Supervisor:

Meredith Welch, MSW, APSW
Phone: 414-252-0350
Fax: 414-252-0365

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