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What is your 4 year old like?


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#1 Pup-pup

Posted 18 January 2013 - 09:13 PM

My DD1 is about to turn 3.  I am thinking about TTC #3,  and want an idea what an average 4 year old is like.  

1.  Does your 4 year old ever need a pram?  
2.  Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves?
3.  What about tantrums?
4.  If you had a newborn and a 4 year old,  what was it like?
5.  What things changed from age 3 to 4.




#2 CallMeProtart

Posted 18 January 2013 - 09:31 PM

My DS is 3 and DD 4, but I'm not sure how many of their differences are personality.

QUOTE (-nic- @ 18/01/2013, 10:13 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My DD1 is about to turn 3.  I am thinking about TTC #3,  and want an idea what an average 4 year old is like.  

1.  Does your 4 year old ever need a pram?  No. But if the walk is long she MAY get tired and go on strike, so I might decide to bring one if it's easy and flat. If shopping, I just put her in the trolley when tired
2.  Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves? Yes, but there is a LOT of nagging involved.
3.  What about tantrums? Shocking. Worse than 3yo. This probably varies from child to child.
4.  If you had a newborn and a 4 year old,  what was it like? n/a
5.  What things changed from age 3 to 4. It may be just my kids but 3 involved a LOT of me repeating myself and nagging, and it's starting to tone down at four. Much more easy to reason with, which is great. Tantrums have got a bit worse for some reason - it's straight to tears for minor things. All the stuff they could already do (dressing, tidying away under extreme nagging) they do better and quicker than 3



#3 bluecardigans

Posted 18 January 2013 - 09:39 PM

QUOTE (-nic- @ 18/01/2013, 10:13 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My DD1 is about to turn 3.  I am thinking about TTC #3,  and want an idea what an average 4 year old is like.  

1.  Does your 4 year old ever need a pram?  Only if I am walking long distances/at a fast pace for exercise and he wants to come with me.
2.  Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves? Most dressing, can feed self without help.
3.  What about tantrums? Rare.
4.  If you had a newborn and a 4 year old,  what was it like? NA
5.  What things changed from age 3 to 4. The ability to dress, put shoes on, will tidy up now just with verbal instructions, can understand having to wait for things including attention, understands that he needs to be tolerant of younger children.



#4 iwanttosleepin

Posted 18 January 2013 - 09:47 PM

1.My 4 year old doesn't NEED a pram.  I actually don't own one anymore.  But he is the world's biggest con artist and I end up carrying him a fair bit.  It's my biggest pet peeve with him at the moment. Next time we go shopping I am taking a scooter - he can go for miles on one.  I would never buy a double pram for a 4 year old.  
2. yes and yes - but he does sometimes refuse to get dressed though.  He can do shoes and socks no problem.  He does go to school full time and they expect full toilet independence and ability to dress themselves from every child - the youngest of which is only just 3 years old.  So in his class every single child is fully toilet trained and able to dress themselves and they are all 3 and 4 year olds.
3. Doesn't tantrum, but is a great whinger
4. I had a newborn and a 3.3 year old.  My older child is/was easier than my second child.  he has a great attention span and loves making/drawing/lego etc.  Number 2 is a wiggly worm.
5. Neither of my children tidy up really (including the 7 year old) but my DH puts that down to genetics not age. I can honestly say that even at 7 they can still be impatient but at least they can entertain themselves for longer.

#5 lynneyours

Posted 18 January 2013 - 09:52 PM

DD1 is 4.5 - she dresses herself always, sleeps through unless she wets the bed, feeds herself, chooses her own clothes and what she wants for breakfast, to watch on TV, what books, what art/craft.  She will happily sit and do "crafting" for HOURS.  She hardly ever throws a tantrum now and loves to be my "helper".  She is also very good with smaller kids.  No pram.

DD2 turns 3 in March.  She can undress herself and some items can dress herself.  She doesn't sleep through.  ever.   She still needs a pram for long distances or to keep her contained/with me/stop touching.  She feeds herself.  She chooses her own clothes and food mostly.  Chooses her own TV/books/activities.   Will NOT play independently for hours like her sister, but will happily destroy for hours if not supervised properly.  Not real interested in being 'Mum's helper'.  Wants to be super-independent however.

Mine were 20 months apart.  I think now would be a great time to have a 3rd - much easier.

#6 GoneWithTheWhinge

Posted 18 January 2013 - 09:52 PM

QUOTE (-nic- @ 18/01/2013, 10:13 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My DD1 is about to turn 3.  I am thinking about TTC #3,  and want an idea what an average 4 year old is like.  

1.  Does your 4 year old ever need a pram?  Not used one in months - she grew too tall and her head wouldn't fit under the hood so we had to say bye to it. She still gets tired on full days out but at 25kg she's too heavy to carry so her legs HAVE to work!

2.  Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves? Yes, chooses own clothes and gets fully dressed daily. Usually in appropriated clothes but sometimes a fairy dress is worn. Feeds herself fully, gets her own breakfast and can make her own simple sandwich


3.  What about tantrums? She is a fiery madam at times, sometimes she is the sweetest funniest kindest girl but other time OMG, vile! She gets very frustrated when she can't do things she feels she ought to because her big sister can do them. She also has a huge sense of fairness and will pull other kids up if they aren't being fair which causes her upset when they ignore her!

4.  If you had a newborn and a 4 year old,  what was it like? Can't help there

5.  What things changed from age 3 to 4. So much more independent, she is able to draw and write simple words so her frustration in her pictures is lessening. She is more able to understand reason and responds really well to being in control of her own choices which she couldn't comprehend at 3. She is also far more able to play independently and her confidence in herself is improving.



#7 katrina24

Posted 18 January 2013 - 09:52 PM

Hi, I've had 2 very different 4 yr olds.

Pram - neither used a pram except for really long walks (like a walk for my exercise).
Feed and dress - yes to both. Still cut up their meat and firmer salads, veges at 4.  Needed help with some buttons, shoe laces and occasionally tighter t-shirts coming off.
Tantrums - DD1 wasn't a tantrum haver, DD2 still has them occasionally but usually at home.
I never had a newborn and a 4 yo but I have very close friends who had a newborn when both mine were 4 (2 different newborns obviously). Both my girls were great when I babysat and were quite helpful. Preschoolers can often be fairly self sufficient for short periods and can get some one:one time while bub is sleeping.  
Changes from 3-4 - more understanding, preschools brings increased independence, better communication all round really.

#8 gettheetoanunnery

Posted 18 January 2013 - 09:58 PM

QUOTE (-nic- @ 18/01/2013, 09:13 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My DD1 is about to turn 3.  I am thinking about TTC #3,  and want an idea what an average 4 year old is like.  

1.  Does your 4 year old ever need a pram?  Not since he was two/three. He walks and is a big lad. I'm 5 ft 8 and he is too big to carry
2.  Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves? Yep- insists upon it
3.  What about tantrums? Yep, those too. More than when he was three.  
4.  If you had a newborn and a 4 year old,  what was it like? The four yr old was fine, not jealous and more "into" the baby than the others and remains quite protective of her.
5.  What things changed from age 3 to 4. Independence. Less instruction needed, but more negotiation required..actually, not so much negotiation more like compromise, on both our parts.
BUT -to qualify these statements, I've had three very different 4 yr old boys. My eldest lad was more prone to tantrums than his younger siblings. DS2 was and still is the cruisiest laid back child...any more chill and he would be horizontal and always wanted to be carried or be in the pram.



#9 niggles

Posted 18 January 2013 - 09:58 PM

QUOTE (-nic- @ 18/01/2013, 07:13 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My DD1 is about to turn 3.  I am thinking about TTC #3,  and want an idea what an average 4 year old is like.  

1.  Does your 4 year old ever need a pram?  
2.  Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves?
3.  What about tantrums?
4.  If you had a newborn and a 4 year old,  what was it like?
5.  What things changed from age 3 to 4.


We had our second a few months before DD turned 4.

1. She doesn't need a pram. Sometimes she asks for one but she doesn't need it and we haven't used it for her since well before the baby was born. Sometimes she'll jump her feet up on the back axle and ride that way if she gets tired.

2. We haven't fed her for as long as I can remember. Certainly well before she turned 4. She can dress herself but isn't great with buttons. She's also quite slow at times so we generally include ourselves in her getting dressed routine even now at 4.5 if nothing but to jolly her along a little and take care of difficult buttons.

3. Her tantrums were in the form of drop to the floor and cry melt downs and she still has them occasionally. They are much more rare and we can head them off generally since doing some excellent work in this area with her kindy teacher that we carried on at home. Specifically the PATHS programme and 'doing the turtle' to express your feelings, if you are interested.

4.  She was 3.5 and starting 4 year old kindy when we had a newborn. She's not motherly like some girls her age so it's mostly been cruisy between the two of them. She's only recently started paying him regular attention. She's been proud of him and considers him 'our baby' but she hasn't liked to interact with him much at all until now. Even now he only gets a quick play now and then. She is very gentle with him, never tries to interfere with him and is very good at managing him when he picks up her toys and the like. Overall I can't complain at all. She's just not very 'into babies' as she put it to me once.

She's of an age that allows me to shower and leave them alone together and such. I can also leave her playing by herself while I take him to another room to feed and settle him for a while. She's very patient and understanding about that and never shows signs of jealousy, only of pride when he does something new or funny, annoyance or disinterest when he does anything else.

5. I can't remember what changed. I'm terrible at that. She's better at managing her emotions and talking through her problems. She's more independent in some ways and then not in others. She's funnier, more opinionated and more single minded and focussed in her interests. She'll spend more time on any one project. Personality wise I find her much the same as she was as a baby.

#10 FourLittleLoves

Posted 18 January 2013 - 09:59 PM

1. Does your 4 year old ever need a pram? No, I do take a strolli rider so he can sit down on our way home from kindy if ge gets tired though.
2. Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves?Yes, isn't very good with coordinating outfits yet though original.gif
3. What about tantrums?Only when he is tired but will listen when you ask him to calm down and will then listen to us so we can reason with him.
4. If you had a newborn and a 4 year old, what was it like?He is so good with DD, I imagine having just a 4yo and a newborn would be a breeze (compared to my current situation which isn't that bad).
5. What things changed from age 3 to 4.
He listens better now and can we reasoned with, also he is at kindy 2 days a week so my attention is only divided 3 ways on those days. :)Besides that not much has changed with his personality.

#11 caitiri

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:03 PM

My DS is almost 4  he is probably what you would class as high maintenance so maybe not typical

1. Does your 4 year old ever need a pram?
No he never needs one but I always have one for my 2yo and if the younger one wants to walk he will often jump in because he's "soooooo tired mum and needs to have a little rest"

2. Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves?  
Yes everything but socksbut requires constant nagging to do it.

3. What about tantrums?
OMG the tantrums
4. If you had a newborn and a 4 year old, what was it like?
N/A
5. What things changed from age 3 to 4.
He is finally getting to the point where he can tell us what he is feeling ie frustrated, bored, angry.   Friends are becoming very important he misses them if we don't see them for a while and he is more attached to them.

#12 Kay1

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:08 PM

I had #3 when #2 was a month shy of 4. original.gif

I've had two 4 year olds:

1. Does your 4 year old ever need a pram? DS1 yes DS2 no
2. Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves? DS1 no, not at 4. DS2 Yes but one clothing item is always reversed. original.gif
3. What about tantrums? DS1 yes, DS2 no
4. If you had a newborn and a 4 year old, what was it like? DS2 is the 4 year old and he is far more dependant on DS1 than on me so apart from the never ending chatter sometimes driving me insane when DS1 is at school we have had no issues. DS1 was 3 when DS2 was born and that was a much harder gap as he was still in nappies, more tantrummy and just generally harder work, but that could also largely be because he didn't have an older sibling to entertain him/look after him.
5. What things changed from age 3 to 4. More independent, TT.



#13 IsolaBella

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:09 PM

My kids all gave up prams before 3yrs. Minimal use from 2.5 yrs.

4yo can feed themselves. Dressing depends on the child.

Tantrums also depends on the child.

My 4yo and NB was busy, but that was because I also had a 2yo.

Changes from 3-4 .... More kinder days.

DD my youngest has just turned three. She now walks to the shops. 2kms to the shops, 2kms home. We gave one of the last prams to my sister. Now only have emerg umbrella for is she if very sick and we need to go out.

Edited by lsolaBella, 18 January 2013 - 10:11 PM.


#14 bettymm

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:10 PM

1. Does your 4 year old ever need a pram? She is pretty good walking with me, but i have a 1 year old too and i will bring the double pram if we are planning a huge day out at the zoo, or walking around sydney for hours etc.  (she turned four in Nov 2012)
2. Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves? She can, but prefers us to help her.  No problems feeding herself she mastered that from an early age!
3. What about tantrums?  2 weeks ago i would have said they never happen anymore! but for some reason the last two weeks she has had some doozies! its very hot here, so im hoping thats to blame.  
4. If you had a newborn and a 4 year old, what was it like? N/A  I had my second bub when she was 3.  I quite liked that age gap but i think 4 years would be even better!
5. What things changed from age 3 to 4.
She can entertain herself a lot more without needing me.  She will colour in for ages, crafts, playing imaginary things with her dinosaurs, setting up tea parties etc.  I can reason with her and explain things much more easily. Starting to want to do a few things by herself, like putting on sunscreen , turning taps on, loves having the opportunity to help cook and prepare her own snacks/meals.

Edited by bettymm, 18 January 2013 - 10:11 PM.


#15 A.K.A

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:18 PM


1. Does your 4 year old ever need a pram? DS hasn't used a pram for about 18months. He can't walk huge distances and is a little slow but his legs are much shorter than mine  happy.gif

2. Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves? Yes he can do both, he can even prepare his food if it's within range.

3. What about tantrums? DS has never really been one for tantrums. He can get a little stroppy and in that case he will take himself off to his room and shut the door.

4. If you had a newborn and a 4 year old, what was it like? Have not had a newborn.

5. What things changed from age 3 to 4. DS became more 'teenage' like, more attitude. He turned more from a little boy into a big boy.

#16 tres-chic

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:28 PM

My four year old (DS2) is an angel.

1. Does your 4 year old ever need a pram? No, although he will occasionally cadge a ride in DD's stroller if she's not in it.

2. Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves? Yes. His fine motor skills were slow to develop, he's been to the OT but he is good with most things.

3. What about tantrums? Rarely, maybe one every six months. But they are doosies when they happen.

4 N/A

5. What things changed from age 3 to 4. Toilet training was the biggie and his language (learning alphabet and writing better with OT help) means he is much better able to entertain himself than before.



#17 *lightning

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:32 PM

1. Does your 4 year old ever need a pram? No.
2. Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves? He needs a bit of help sometimes but usually he can dress and feed himself without help.
3. What about tantrums? My 4 year old doesn't tantrum much but will throw things around the room if he gets really made but it's rare.
4. If you had a newborn and a 4 year old, what was it like? I have a 4 year old and newborn right now and it's good but I also have a 7 year old and autistic 2 year old. We are a busy family.
5. What things changed from age 3 to 4. He matured a lot and became more like my 7 year old.

#18 KnightsofNi

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:44 PM

4 year olds are easy! (well at least mine is). I had a 1 year old when I have my second, and I can only image that having a 4 year old would be much easier.

I haven't used a pram since either of my kids were one. They can walk for hours! But if having a whole day out, we do need to pace it.
DD does have the occassional tantrum, but they are much more easily managed than when they are younger. My 4yo DD has a tantrum, I just ignore it and 5 minutes later she is fine
My DD can dress herself, feed herself, get herself snacks, buckle herself into her seat, she helps out with her younger brother, helps around the house. She is very independant.

Good luck!

#19 B.3

Posted 18 January 2013 - 10:52 PM

QUOTE (-nic- @ 18/01/2013, 09:13 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My DD1 is about to turn 3.  I am thinking about TTC #3,  and want an idea what an average 4 year old is like.  

1.  Does your 4 year old ever need a pram?  
2.  Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves?
3.  What about tantrums?
4.  If you had a newborn and a 4 year old,  what was it like?
5.  What things changed from age 3 to 4.


My son just turned 4 a few weeks ago.

1. No. He has only ever sat in a pram a few times in his life though. We'd always just use a trolley or the Ergo. He is a really tiny 4 year old but I think he be too big for a pram anyway?

2. Yes, he can dress and feed himself.

3. Tantrums, he's never really had one. He's really really easy going. I can take him anywhere.

4. He was 3 when DS3 was born. It was like any other day. I noticed no differences in his general persona.

5. Not much apart from more awareness of the world around him.

#20 Oriental lily

Posted 18 January 2013 - 11:03 PM

My middle DD turned 4 last September .

She is a sweet little gorgeous well behaved girl the majority of the time.

But when she is bad?

She is VERY bad lol.

She has tantrums and seems  to get caught on a issue and won't give up on it.
For example if I tell her she is behaving silly for  wanting a different colour bowl for breakfast she will occasionally have a tantrum that will last far more than it should be by the rather throw away line of me calling her silly.

She is very sensitive and hates any perceived criticism.

That's the hardest thing about her.

Has not been in  a pram for two years.

Feeds herself fine, can dress herself in easy clothes.

I can not see much difference between 3 and 4 other than no night nappies and overall less tanties and more predictable 'good' behavior.

Edited by Oriental lily, 18 January 2013 - 11:04 PM.


#21 Frau Farbissina

Posted 18 January 2013 - 11:06 PM



1. Does your 4 year old ever need a pram?
Ds1 didn't need one but he was always more than happy to sit in the stroller if it was available. We also had the "skateboard" attachment which got used a lot.

2. Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves?
Feeding yes, dressing self- technically yes but always wanted me to help.

3. What about tantrums?
There was a massive reduction in tantrums- it was a lovely change!

5. What things changed from age 3 to 4.
Well tantrums dropped off, listening to mum increased a heap, longer stretches if independent play.


#22 chookpea

Posted 18 January 2013 - 11:22 PM

I had DS2 when DS1 was 3.5 years old. He's almost 4.5 now.

1.  Does your 4 year old ever need a pram?  
No, but he does like to sit in it when I'm holding DS2 for whatever reason, just for fun.

2.  Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves?
He can kind of dress himself now but needs a bit of help.  He can kind of feed himself too, if he likes the food, otherwise someone has to feed him which is a bit frustrating.

3.  What about tantrums?
Not that often now.

4.  If you had a newborn and a 4 year old,  what was it like?
Interesting, tiring, exciting original.gif There was no jealousy when DS2 was born.  DS1 was very excited about being a big brother.  He helped me get things if I was feeding DS2, and also kept himself busy with his toys if I was feeding or settling.  He's also very happy about offloading all his "baby" toys to his little brother.

5.  What things changed from age 3 to 4.
Nothing really.  

I'm very happy with the age gap we have.  It's close enough for them to be close, but also far enough for DS1 to understand if mummy is busy with baby or whatever.

#23 mad madam mim

Posted 19 January 2013 - 01:32 AM

1. Does your 4 year old ever need a pram?  No we don't use the pram any more, we haven't in quite some time unless we are doing a really long walk.
2. Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves?  Sort of, they need help getting clothes around the right way etc but can put them on themselves once shown, they can't get their own cereal, but they get their own fruit, have been eating their own meals from their plates for years, sometimes need help opening wrappers etc, but DS1 helps them a lot with that sort of thing aswell.
3. What about tantrums? Can't comment lol, we have lots of tantrums, but this is mainly due to having another the same age to compete with (I don't remember ds1 having tantrums at 4)
4. If you had a newborn and a 4 year old, what was it like?  can't really answer sorry
5. What things changed from age 3 to 4. not much, more annoying lol, all my children are so different from each other, ds1 is very intellectual, at 4 he was learning to write his name, learning to read etc, DD and DS2 though prefer to be outside getting dirty at 4 than be inside reading books.



#24 Ianthe

Posted 19 January 2013 - 01:52 AM

1. Does your 4 year old ever need a pram? No
2. Can your 4 year old dress & feed themselves? He can dress himself but I usually do it, not sure why, probably because he's my youngest. He always feeds himself.
3. What about tantrums? Intense when they happen and 4yos are strong. But not very frequent at all.
4. If you had a newborn and a 4 year old, what was it like? Great. I had four years between my fourth and fifth kids and it was really manageable. My easiest transition with a newborn and he was my worst sleeper.
5. What things changed from age 3 to 4.
So much more sensible and reasonable than 3.

#25 Nofliesonme

Posted 19 January 2013 - 02:45 AM

My 4 yo is mostly a pleasure. She doesn't ask to be picked up or pram it. She has gotten worse with listening. Generally a good kid. She dressed herself




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