Small children can become very fond of autonomy. Reminding them that they are less than four feet tall and only 3-years-old doesn't seem to help much (actually, it doesn't help at all!). So, what can be done to foster this independence without letting them run amok? In a word: choices. To be more specific, choices that you've chosen. Choices allow children to feel independent while allowing parents to have control. As an example, while the number of stories read before bed is your decision, which stories are read could be hers. And, while choosing whether she wears shorts or pants on a snowy day is your choice, the color of the pants can be hers. Allowing your very young child to make choices provides excellent lessons for the years to come. As your child grows up, the choices you provide should work toward the goal of lessening your oversight and increasing her ability to provide her own oversight.