My three year old son. Has a pretty good memory. (Sometimes better than mine). And will happily talk about and answer questions about things that we have done. But he just places it all 'last year'. Even if I explain the concepts of yesterday, last week, etc. When asked when something was it always seems to be last year.

He also seems to have difficulty remembering events in order. Nit being sure if something yesterday and last year happened more recently.

If this is just a concept that will come in time then I don't mind letting him work it out.

However if nor is there anything I can do to help him understand the concepts? A game or something?

1 Answer 1


I think this is just a cognitive skill that 3 year olds don't have yet. I also have a 3 year old son who remembers everything, even the most arcane details. But for him, it's all "yesterday". Which can be confusing when he says something happened yesterday, and we have to realize he means 3 weeks ago.

He's just now (at almost 3 1/2) starting to try to describe multiple "yesterdays" - e.g. if something was a long time ago, say multiple months, he takes longer to describe when it was.

So I think it's just something that takes time to develop. Even explaining it to him likely won't help, as his brain just doesn't have the ability to know what it means.

  • I think you are probably right. It is just strange when there are so many things they do understand to have some things that the just can't get yet. Jan 18, 2016 at 15:57

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