Taking 3-year-olds out

By the time children get to be 3 years of age, they are, generally, better at walking and so can walk for longer periods of time. The distance children walk can be built up over time: the more they do it, the better at it they become.

Like 2-year-olds, 3-year-olds are also fascinated by “treasure”. The journey provides interest as well as the destination. They often enjoy talking about the experiences they have had. This helps them to consolidate their learning. Resources can be developed by you that will help the children to talk about their trips, such as photo books, games, etc as well as using commercially produced resources. They also love to balance and spin on street furniture such as cycle railings.

In the same way that 2-year-olds will need clear expectations as to their behaviour, so will 3-year-olds. They can be given be given reminders before and during the outing: consistency from the adults with them will be important.

Children will need to be given time to walk or have things to occupy them if public transport is being used. Being on public transport can be very exciting for young children, especially if they spend most of their time in cars or walking. These outings can help expand the world of a young child. It will be important to consider the children’s interests or possible interests, the distance that has be travelled, and the cost when deciding on where to go. The children can be included in deciding where to go and in completing the risk assessment.

It is important to have a balance between new places and places children feel familiar with. It may be worth thinking about and talking with families about the type of experience you could offer which would extend their learning and experience. For example, if you take the children to the shop, using real money rather than a card would enable the child to understand there are different ways to pay. They can also start to learn what the different coins are in a meaningful way.

It will be worth thinking about completing the mapping activity to see where you could take your 3-year-olds.

Further reading

Overcoming barriers

An early task for the Exploring the Wider World project was to identify the barriers to taking children out and about beyond the setting. Only

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Taking risks

Risk is a natural part of our existence, as we look to explore and make sense of the world around us. What is key is

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Planning trips out

This page brings together all the key project elements of thinking through a trip or a visit in one handy place, with downloadable resources for

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Your resources

Meaningful learning opportunities relating to understanding the world rely on rich and stimulating resources. Consider what you have Rich and well thought out resources make

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Taking 4-year-olds out

Most 4-year-olds can walk faster and further than their younger counterparts. This means that they can venture further afield than the three year olds in

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Using social media

Social media is a powerful tool for sharing examples of good practice and celebrating achievements – but there potential pitfalls, particularly relating to consent. We

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Cultural capital

This article by Early Education Associate Anni McTavish explores the term “cultural capital”, and what it might mean for early years practitioners and their settings.

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Transition is part of the maturation process. Most children and their families find moving from one stage to the next seamless. Transitions need careful planning and will

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