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Your 3-year-old now
Time to get out some pictures or videos of your child at 1 or 2 and compare how much bigger and stronger she is, how much more confidently she moves. You'll notice other physical differences, too. She's taller now and her limbs are leaner — she's taken on the proportions of a "big kid." Most 3-year-olds have lost most of their toddler belly by now.
Notice how she approaches the developmental tasks in front of her. Is she more focused on running and jumping or drawing and block-building? Is she athletically fearless or slower to try new things? These insights help you decode her individual personality.
Some wonderful ways to track her progress:
- Measure her every few months against a wall in your home and mark her height with a line and the date.
- On the first of every month, make a video of her playing for a while. You'll have some incredible time-lapse footage by her next birthday.
- Buy a large portfolio and save a few favorite drawings, being sure to jot down the date. (If you choose carefully and weed periodically, you can keep this portfolio going all through childhood.)
Your life now
Whining is an annoying habit any young child can develop. Here are some ways to respond constructively:
- With humor: "I'm sorry, but I can't hear you. I have very sensitive ears that filter out all whining."
- Redirecting: "When you can use a normal voice again, I'll listen."
- Labeling it: "You're using a whine, not asking in a nice way."
- Modeling: "Instead of whining, here's a better way to say it."
- Praise: "I loved how you didn't whine all day long. Let's see if you can have a perfect record again tomorrow."
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