This is a dramatic and creative age. Many conversations between preschool-age friends start with "Let's pretend...." Children become social. They become interested in playing with each other instead of preferring to play alone. Many toys become props for cooperative play.
Preschool-age children also are interested in active physical play. They have more control of their muscles at this age and this can be seen in the move from a tricycle to a two-wheel bike. Preschoolers also are increasingly curious about the world around them. They enjoy realistic toys such as farm and animal sets, grocery store prop boxes, model cars, and trains.
As hand coordination increases, so does the child's interest in simple construction sets and more difficult puzzles. They can manage more difficult creative projects, and enjoy cutting and simple sewing projects, in addition to the paint and play dough of earlier stages. Since children at this age also are busy learning to read and write, give them play equipment that encourages these interests.
You may notice that preschool children play with many of the same toys as toddlers, but do so in different ways. As a caregiver, encourage them to be creative and to experiment. There are fewer safety concerns in this stage, but sharp or cutting toys and electrical toys are still too dangerous.