Preschoolers do all kinds of strange things that make their parents say—WHAT?! No need to hit the panic button just yet, your preschooler’s wild imagination, potty talk and seemingly unnatural obsessions are 100% normal. In fact, some of their strangest behaviors could show signs of intelligence. Here are 9 strange things smart preschoolers are well known for!
#1. They Have Imaginary Friends
Growing up my imaginary friend was a girl named Jennifer, I knew she wasn’t real like my other friends, but my imagination gave her physical features and a personality. Clearly, I never forgot Jennifer, but one day I simply outgrew her.
It’s perfectly normal and even healthy for kids to have imaginary friends. It might seem strange when your child asks you to set a place at the table for an invisible girl named Breanne, but it’s nothing to be concerned about. Why not set the extra table setting and partake in their healthy imaginative play?
#2. They Pretend To Read Books
Children that improvise words and “fake” read books at an impossibly early age are more likely to excel at reading and writing in the future. All of that pretend reading allows kids the chance to start recognizing words, even if they’ve never been formally taught how to read.
#3. They Talk About The Potty All Of The Time
Poop, butts, farts and pee-pee are not things grown ups run around discussing, but preschoolers are commonly ranting and raving about what goes on in the bathroom. There’s a reason so many kid books are dedicated to the topic, all that occurs in the bathroom fascinates kids.
Try not to let their odd comments offend you, after all they just want to share that they tooted and popped out their butt! Allow them to talk openly about the bathroom, but you can set limits and let them know it’s not okay to talk about it at dinner, etc.
#4. They Get Dreams Mixed Up With Reality
If your child starts asking you about a trip to the mountains that you never went on, they might be referencing a dream. It’s completely normal for young kids to confuse dreams with reality.
#5. They Are Obsessed With Collecting A Certain Something
Seashells, horse figurines, or coins–it doesn’t matter what your child is obsessed with collecting because it’s completely normal. Obsessively collecting things can also be a sign of intelligence. It might seem like a wasteful habit to you, but all of that collecting turns into sorting, imaginative play and other beneficial things.
#6. They Want To Do The Same Things Over and Over
Perhaps there’s a certain movie your little one wants to watch over and over, or a particular book they just can’t get enough of. Maybe it’s a certain pair of shoes they only want to wear, like rain boots in the summer. Don’t let seemingly over compulsive obsessions get to you. It’s perfectly normal for preschoolers to get into repetitive habits. Eventually the phase will pass.
#7. They Question Anything & Everything
Really small kids take “because I said so” for a sufficient answer, but by the time preschool comes around it isn’t so easy to win your way with your developing toddler. Preschoolers question everything, and oftentimes over and over again.
You tell your child they can have one bite of cake and they barter you for three bites, or what about an entire slice? You say it’s time to leave the playground now and they beg for 10 more minutes. All of this defiance is your child’s way of starting to assert his or her independence, a perfectly normal part of development. Just don’t forget to set limits and stand your ground or else your little one will learn it’s their way or the highway, and that’s a scary highway to be on!
#8. They Have Very Vivid Imaginations
A vivid imagination can be actualized in so many ways, and sometimes the things kids imagine are weird and even creepy. An active imagination is a sign of intelligence. The ability to think outside of the box will greatly benefit them in the future. Let their little imaginations run wild!
#9. They Love To Embarrass You In Public
Public humiliation is a part of being a parent; we’ve all been there! Try to embrace the moment because it’ll make for a great story someday—after the embarrassment wares off. Perhaps they’ll tell the cashier that you farted really loud on your way to the store, or they’ll tell your prude Aunt Sally that you, yes you, taught them profanity.