Physical Development: Boys vs. Girls

kids climbing at playgroundPreschoolers between the ages of three and five go through a ton of physical changes! But how do boys differ from girls in physical development at this early age?

Age 3

Three-year-olds are still a little unsteady and may fall down once in a while; but they will get up and try again. Three-year-olds are able to walk with good balance and swing their arms with each step. They can climb stairs without assistance, but will place both feet on the step before climbing to the next one. They should be able to hop on one foot two to three times, kick a ball, pedal a tricycle a little, and jump from a height of about one foot.

Age 4

By the age of four, children develop greater coordination, while maintaining the same high energy level of a three-year-old, according to Education.com. Four-year-olds run with better arm and leg coordination. They also learn how to skip and gallop.

Age 5

At age five, children should be able to climb and go down the stairs with alternating feet. They can stand on one foot for about 10 seconds or longer, and can jump over an object that’s about 10 inches high.

During the preschool years, a boy’s gross motor skills develop slightly faster on average, while a girl’s fine motor skills improve faster.

The preschool years are active years. It may seem like your child is constantly on the move, rarely seated calmly, and perhaps stopping your heart a time or two as they push themselves to try more and more daring things—especially if you have a boy.

Research shows that there is some truth to the gender stereotypes, and that the differences between boys and girls can be seen from birth. Boys love action and motion, especially mechanical motion, according to Education.com. They’re more curious about things like mechanical motion and crowds, rather than about individual people and conversation. Boys are naturally more aggressive and impulsive. They’re also more likely to end up in the Emergency Room—studies have shown that the pleasure center of the brain lights up for boys when they are taking a risk.

As babies and toddlers, boys and girls grow and develop at about the same rate. During the preschool years, they continue to grow at the same rate, but a boy’s gross motor skills develop slightly faster on average, while a girl’s fine motor skills improve faster. For the most part, boys and girls will hit the important milestones at about the same time, but these are the years that their differences will become more and more apparent.

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Physical Development: Boys vs. Girls

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