How your 5+ year-old might play now

    • He draws recognizable pictures, writes his name, dresses himself and completes puzzles
    • She can solve problems and explain things
    • His friendships become stronger
    • She can sort things into basic categories
    • He can imitate your pose and tone of voice
    • She can finish activities without waiting for directions
    • He differentiates between “pretend” and “real” when playing
    • She begins to make comparisons and her memory expands
    • He can explain games to other kids
Preschool cameras and electronic toys
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    Smart Tablet

Help your child learn more:

    • Play favorites. Have your child take pictures of his favorite things. These could include foods, stuffed animals, toys, or anything else he cherishes. He can share it with a teacher, send it to a distant relative or give it to a new friend who wants to know more about him!
    • Look closely. Taking pictures is a great opportunity for your child to refine observation skills. As you look for subjects, talk about how faraway objects look bigger as you approach them.
    • “Zoom” in on objects with something other than a camera. Use a magnifying glass to study insects. Visit a science museum to look into a telescope or microscope. Your child can have lots of fun just studying her features in a magnifying mirror.

Bug Hunt

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At this age, your child probably finds bugs fascinating! Have fun together on a Bug Hunt!


  • Pad of paper and felt-tip pens, or instant camera
  • Yard, park, nature walk, or other outdoor area
  • Magnifying glass
  • Bug identification book (optional)


  • Walk or drive to a park or nature area. Bring a small pad of paper and drawing materials, or an instant camera, if you prefer.
  • Walk through the area and help your child find some bugs. Use a magnifying glass to get a closer look.
  • When you locate a bug, have your child draw a picture of it using her pad and pens, or take a photograph.
  • Continue your walk, looking for different bugs.
  • After you gather a nice collection, return home to organize the drawings or photos. If using a regular camera, have the film developed.
  • Lay the pictures or photos on a table and have your child examine the bugs. Ask her to look for features that are similar and different.
  • If you have a bug identification book, have your child try to identify the bugs and label them.


Be careful with bugs that bite and sting and watch for dangerous plants such as poison ivy.

Look Who's Talking... Like a Baby: Advice from Moms

My 5-year-old son has a 2-year-old sister. When she started walking, he had accidents in his underpants. Now that she's talking, he's copying her mispronounced words, communicating in one-word sentences and inventing nonsense words that he repeats until someone tells him to stop.

We don't lavish attention on our daughter, nor do we neglect to give our son one-on-one time. How can we get him to be his articulate self again?
From Madi in Apex, NC Tell your son that his sister learns more from him than from anyone else, and that he needs to teach her how to talk. It will make him feel important, and it will help him relate to her in a different way. Instead of coming down Read More