kids getting on school busChild Development Guide for School Age Children

Children develop at their own pace, so it’s impossible to tell exactly when yours will learn a given skill. The developmental milestones below will give you a general idea of the changes you can expect as your child gets older, but don’t be alarmed if your child progress is not exactly like listed.

Child Development by Age 5 years (60 months)

Social Skills

  • Wants to please friends
  • Wants to be like her friends
  • More likely to agree to rules
  • Likes to sing, dance, and act
  • Shows more independence and may even visit a next-door neighbor by herself

Emotional Development

  • Aware of gender
  • Able to distinguish fantasy from reality
  • Sometimes demanding, sometimes eagerly cooperative

Cognitive Development

  • Can count 10 or more objects
  • Correctly names at least four colors
  • Better understands the concept of time
  • Knows about things used every day in the home (money, food, appliances)

Language skills

  • Recalls part of a story
  • Speaks sentences of more than five words
  • Uses future tense
  • Tells longer stories
  • Says name and address

Movement

  • Stands on one foot for 10 seconds or longer
  • Hops, somersaults
  • Swings, climbs
  • May be able to skip

Hand and Finger Skills

    • Copies triangle and other shapes
    • Draws person with body
    • Prints some letters
    • Dresses and undresses without help
    • Uses fork, spoon, and (sometimes) a table knife
    • Usually cares for own toilet needs

Health Watch

Tell your child’s doctor or nurse if your child displays any of the following signs of possible developmental delay for this age range.

      • Acts extremely fearful or timid
      • Acts extremely aggressively
      • Is unable to separate from parents without major protest
      • Is easily distracted and unable to concentrate on any single activity for more than five minutes
      • Shows little interest in playing with other children
      • Refuses to respond to people in general, or responds only superficially
      • Rarely uses fantasy or imitation in play
      • Seems unhappy or sad much of the time
      • Doesn’t engage in a variety of activities
      • Avoids or seems aloof with other children and adults
      • Doesn’t express a wide range of emotions
      • Has trouble eating, sleeping, or using the toilet
      • Can’t tell the difference between fantasy and reality
      • Seems unusually passive
      • Cannot understand two-part commands using prepositions (“Put the doll on the bed, and get the ball under the couch.”)
      • Can’t correctly give her first and last name
      • Doesn’t use plurals or past tense properly when speaking
      • Doesn’t talk about her daily activities and experiences
      • Cannot build a tower of six to eight blocks
      • Seems uncomfortable holding a crayon
      • Has trouble taking off clothing
      • Cannot brush her teeth efficiently
      • Cannot wash and dry her hands

Child Development by Age 6-8 years

Emotional/Social Changes

Children in this age group might:

  • Show more independence from parents and family.
  • Start to think about the future.
  • Understand more about his or her place in the world.
  • Pay more attention to friendships and teamwork.
  • Want to be liked and accepted by friends.

Thinking and Learning

Children in this age group might:

  • Show rapid development of mental skills.
  • Learn better ways to describe experiences and talk about thoughts and feelings.
  • Have less focus on one’s self and more concern for others.

Positive Parenting Tips

Following are some things you, as a parent, can do to help your child during this time:

  • Show affection for your child. Recognize her accomplishments.
  • Help your child develop a sense of responsibility—ask him to help with household tasks, such as setting the table.
  • Talk with your child about school, friends, and things she looks forward to in the future.
  • Talk with your child about respecting others. Encourage him to help people in need.
  • Help your child set her own achievable goals—she’ll learn to take pride in herself and rely less on approval or reward from others.
  • Help your child learn patience by letting others go first or by finishing a task before going out to play. Encourage him to think about possible consequences before acting.
  • Make clear rules and stick to them, such as how long your child can watch TV or when she has to go to bed. Be clear about what behavior is okay and what is not okay.
  • Do fun things together as a family, such as playing games, reading, and going to events in your community.
  • Get involved with your child’s school. Meet the teachers and staff and get to understand their learning goals and how you and the school can work together to help your child do well.
  • Continue reading to your child. As your child learns to read, take turns reading to each other.
  • Use discipline to guide and protect your child, rather than punishment to make him feel bad about himself. Follow up any discussion about what not to do with a discussion of what to do instead.
  • Praise your child for good behavior. It’s best to focus praise more on what your child does (“you worked hard to figure this out”) than on traits she can’t change (“you are smart”).
  • Support your child in taking on new challenges. Encourage her to solve problems, such as a disagreement with another child, on her own.
  • Encourage your child to join school and community groups, such as a team sports, or to take advantage of volunteer opportunities.

 

Safety Tips

More physical ability and more independence can put children at risk for injuries from falls and other accidents. Motor vehicle crashes are the most common cause of death from unintentional injury among children this age.

  • Protect your child properly in the car. For detailed information, visit the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Car Seats: Information for Families.
  • Teach your child to watch out for traffic and how to be safe when walking to school, riding a bike, and playing outside.
  • Make sure your child understands water safety, and always supervise her when she’s swimming or playing near water.
  • Supervise your child when he’s engaged in risky activities, such as climbing.
  • Talk with your child about how to ask for help when she needs it.
  • Keep potentially harmful household products, tools, equipment, and firearms out of your child’s reach.

Healthy Bodies

  • Parents can help make schools healthier. Work with your child’s school to limit access to foods and drinks with added sugar, solid fat, and salt that can be purchased outside the school lunch program.
  • Make sure your child has 1 hour or more of physical activity each day.
  • Limit screen time for your child to no more than 1 to 2 hours per day of quality programming, at home, school, or afterschool care.
  • Practice healthy eating habits and physical activity early. Encourage active play, and be a role model by eating healthy at family mealtimes and having an active lifestyle.

Child Development by Age 9- 11 years

Emotional/Social Changes

Children in this age group might:

  • Start to form stronger, more complex friendships and peer relationships. It becomes more emotionally important to have friends, especially of the same sex.
  • Experience more peer pressure.
  • Become more aware of his or her body as puberty approaches. Body image and eating problems sometimes start around this age.

Thinking and Learning

Children in this age group might:

  • Face more academic challenges at school.
  • Become more independent from the family.
  • Begin to see the point of view of others more clearly.
  • Have an increased attention span.

Positive Parenting Tips

Following are some things you, as a parent, can do to help your child during this time:
  • Spend time with your child. Talk with her about her friends, her accomplishments, and what challenges she will face.
  • Be involved with your child’s school. Go to school events; meet your child’s teachers.
  • Encourage your child to join school and community groups, such as a sports team, or to be a volunteer for a charity.
  • Help your child develop his own sense of right and wrong. Talk with him about risky things friends might pressure him to do, like smoking or dangerous physical dares.
  • Help your child develop a sense of responsibility—involve your child in household tasks like cleaning and cooking. Talk with your child about saving and spending money wisely.
  • Meet the families of your child’s friends.
  • Talk with your child about respecting others. Encourage her to help people in need. Talk with her about what to do when others are not kind or are disrespectful.
  • Help your child set his own goals. Encourage him to think about skills and abilities he would like to have and about how to develop them.
  • Make clear rules and stick to them. Talk with your child about what you expect from her (behavior) when no adults are present. If you provide reasons for rules, it will help her to know what to do in most situations.
  • Use discipline to guide and protect your child, instead of punishment to make him feel badly about himself.
  • When using praise, help your child think about her own accomplishments. Saying “you must be proud of yourself” rather than simply “I’m proud of you” can encourage your child to make good choices when nobody is around to praise her.
  • Talk with your child about the normal physical and emotional changes of puberty.
  • Encourage your child to read every day. Talk with him about his homework.
  • Be affectionate and honest with your child, and do things together as a family.

Child Safety First

More independence and less adult supervision can put children at risk for injuries from falls and other accidents. Here are a few tips to help protect your child:

  • Protect your child in the car. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administrationrecommends that you keep your child in a booster seat until he is big enough to fit in a seat belt properly. Remember: your child should still ride in the back seat until he or she is 12 years of age because it’s safer there. Motor vehicle crashes are the most common cause of death from unintentional injury among children of this age.
  • Know where your child is and whether a responsible adult is present. Make plans with your child for when he will call you, where you can find him, and what time you expect him home.
  • Make sure your child wears a helmet when riding a bike or a skateboard or using inline skates; riding on a motorcycle, snowmobile, or all-terrain vehicle; or playing contact sports.
  • Many children get home from school before their parents get home from work. It is important to have clear rules and plans for your child when she is home alone.

Healthy Bodies

  • Provide plenty of fruits and vegetables; limit foods high in solid fats, added sugars, or salt, and prepare healthier foods for family meals.
  • Keep television sets out of your child’s bedroom. Limit screen time, including computers and video games, to no more than 1 to 2 hours.
  • Encourage your child to participate in an hour a day of physical activities that are age appropriate and enjoyable and that offer variety! Just make sure your child is doing three types of activity: aerobic activity like running, muscle strengthening like climbing, and bone strengthening – like jumping rope – at least three days per week.

 

pre teen peer pressureFor School-age children, Sharon Scott’s charming series of five books for elementary-age children each teaching an important living skill and “co-authored with her savvy Cocker Spaniel Nicholas who makes the learning fun. Their book on managing elementary-age peer pressure is titled Too Smart for Trouble

 

parenting book learning schoolTips from the Teacher

by Jennifer Cummings, M.Ed.

A Parent-Friendly Guide of Teacher Tips and Useful Tricks You Can Use to Help Your Child Succeed in School Today

 

Sources: CDCNational Institute of Child Health and Human Development

 

Sticks and Stones – Teaching Kids the Power of Words

 

Easing Your Child’s School Anxiety

 

Child Development: Preteens and Tweens

.

 

 

 

SaveSave

https://www.familiesonlinemagazine.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/backtoschool.jpghttps://www.familiesonlinemagazine.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/backtoschool-150x150.jpgJoan McCrayAges and StagesAges and Stages,Elementary School Age Children,Emotional and Social Well-being,ParentingChild Development Guide for School Age Children Children develop at their own pace, so it's impossible to tell exactly when yours will learn a given skill. The developmental milestones below will give you a general idea of the changes you can expect as your child gets older, but don't be alarmed if your...Parenting and Family Fun Activities for Kids