• This is your tenth key age and stage visit with a maternal and child health nurse in your local area. 
  • Maternal and child health nurses work in partnership with families to care for babies and young children until they start school. The service is free for all Victorian families.
  • You will visit a maternal and child health nurse at 10 key ages and stages from birth to three and a half years.
  • Your nurse can help you with things like feeding your child; sleep making sure your child is growing, learning and developing well; being a parent and looking after yourself.

What happens at my three and a half year maternal and child health visit?

When your child turns three-and-a-half, it is time for their final key age and stage appointment with your maternal and child health nurse.

At this visit, your child's growth, health and development will be reviewed and your nurse will discuss their kindergarten enrolment. They will be given a vision screening to check their clarity of vision, using the Melbourne Initial Screening Test (MIST).

You will also be asked to answer My Health, Learning and Development – green book. It is under the Parents' Evaluation of Development Status (PEDS) section. Try to complete these questions before your visit.

This visit will focus on:

Remember, you and your nurse can talk about other issues or concerns if they arise.

Tip sheets for this visit

What is my child doing at this key age and stage?

At this key age and stage, your child is becoming more independent and adventurous. They love to be involved with everyday activities like cooking and shopping.

They might be:

  • running, climbing stairs
  • drawing, and cutting with scissors
  • asking lots of questions
  • playing with other children and learning how to share
  • understanding their own and other people's feelings.

What to tell your nurse

Please tell the nurse if your child is:

  • NOT talking clearly
  • NOT able to talk in sentences
  • NOT coming to you for affection or comfort
  • NOT playing 'imaginary' games
  • NOT playing with other children
  • NOT drawing.

Activity ideas for this key age and stage

Try some of these ideas to help your child learn and develop:

  • play games that involve sharing and taking turns
  • let them help with the cooking, shopping or gardening 
  • read with them and ask questions about the story 
  • encourage them to draw and talk about their picture
  • give them lots of outdoor playtime with plenty of running, tumbling and rolling.

How often should I visit?

You will be asked to see your maternal and child health nurse at 10 key ages and stages in your child’s health, learning and development. These include:

Families can access the service at other times by telephone or through a centre visit. Most centres offer a range of times when families can access the service. They typically operate through scheduled appointments, open consultation sessions and some after-hours appointments.

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Where to get help


More information


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Maternal and child health

Parenting basics

Family structures

Communication, identity and behaviour

Raising healthy children

Common childhood health concerns


Keeping yourself healthy

Child safety and accident prevention

Grief and trauma

Support for parents

Content Partner

This page has been produced in consultation with and approved by: Maternal and Child Health and Parenting

Last updated: October 2019

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