5 Years

What Most Children Do by This Age

Social and Emotional

  • Follows rules or takes turns when playing with other children
  • Sings, dances, or acts for you
  • Does simple chores at home, like matching socks or clearing the table after eating

Cognitive (Learning, Thinking, Problem Solving)

  • Counts 10 
  • Names some numbers between 1 and 5 when you point to them
  • Uses words about time, like “yesterday,” “tomorrow,” “morning,” or “night”
  • Pays attention for 5-10 minutes during activities. For example, during story time or making arts and crafts (screen time does not count)
  • Writes some letters in her name
  • Names some letters when you point to them

Language and Communication

  • Tells a story she has heard or made up with at least two events. For example, a cat was stuck in a tree and a firefighter saved it
  • Answers simple questions about a book or story after you read or tell it to him
  • Keeps a conversation going with more than three back-and-forth exchanges
  • Uses or recognizes simple rhymes (bat-at, bat-tall)
  • Uses future tense (for example, “Grandma will be here.”)
  • Says name and address

Movement and Physical Development

  • Buttons some buttons
  • Hops on one foot

Tips and Activities: What You Can Do for Your 5 year old

As your child’s first teacher, you can help his or her learning and brain development. Try these simple tips and activities in a safe way. Talk with your child’s doctor and teachers if you have questions or for more ideas on how to help your child’s development.

  • Your child might start to “talk back” in order to feel independent and test what happens. Limit the attention you give to the negative words. Find alternative activities for her to do that allow her to take the lead and be independent. Make a point of noticing good behavior. “You stayed calm when I told you it’s bedtime.”
  • Ask your child what she is playing. Help her expand her answers by asking “Why?” and “How?” For example, say “That’s a nice bridge you’re building. Why did you put it there?”
  • Play with toys that encourage your child to put things together, such as puzzles and building blocks.

Developmental Milestones