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4-Year-Old Milestones

The developmental milestones for a 4-year-old are focused on continued growth. Just a couple years ago, a ball was something to grasp at with little fingers; now, she’s catching a bounced ball and throwing it back. Deeper cognitive reasoning is emerging, as he understand the concepts of same and different, and begins to follow more complex instructions. While every child grows at his or her own rate, Help Me Grow offers the following developmental milestones as typical for a 4-year-old.

These markers help monitor a child’s progress:

  • Catches a bounced ball most of the time
  • Tells stories and recalls parts of stories
  • Plays cooperatively with other children
  • Copies simple shapes
  • Understands the concept of same and different
  • Follows instructions with two or three steps
  • Hops and stands on one foot for a few seconds
  • Sings a song or says a rhyme from memory
  • Says first and last name
  • Communicates clearly and speaks in complete
  • Negotiates solutions to conflicts
  • Prefers playing with other children than playing alone
  • Understands the concept of counting and may know numbers
  • Draws a person with two to four body parts

For a 4-year-old, parents and caregivers can encourage a child’s development in the following ways:

  • Give the child crayons, markers and a variety of play materials
  • Read with the child every day
  • Pay attention when the child is talking
  • Give the child opportunities to play with other children
  • Say positive things to the child
  • Urge the child to use words to ask for help

Developmental milestones help you understand what’s typical in a child’s development. To learn more about these milestones and how to encourage a child’s progress at different ages, visit helpmegrowmn.org.

Portions of this content, developed by Help Me Grow Minnesota, may have previously appeared elsewhere.

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