What Parents Should Know About School-age Development
By: Ni Putu Ayu Puspa Yuliandari
As a parent, it's important to understand the different aspects of school-age development to better support your child during this crucial phase. The school-age years, typically starting from six to twelve, are marked by significant changes in physical, cognitive, social, and emotional growth. This article will provide a simple overview of what parents should know about school-age development.
During school-age, children experience noticeable physical changes. They grow taller, gain weight, and develop stronger muscles. Proper nutrition and regular exercise are essential to support this growth. Encourage a balanced diet and physical activities like sports and outdoor play to keep your child healthy and active.
Critical Thinking: School-aged children start thinking more critically. They can analyze problems, make decisions, and use logic. You can foster critical thinking by encouraging them to solve puzzles, play strategy games, and discuss everyday challenges.
Language Skills: Your child's vocabulary expands, and they become more proficient in expressing themselves. Reading with your child, talking about their day, and providing access to a variety of reading materials can help enhance their language skills.
Social and Emotional Development
Friendships: Children at this age value friendships with peers. These relationships help them learn about cooperation, empathy, and resolving conflicts. Encourage playdates and group activities to promote healthy social interactions.
Emotional Growth: School-age children are learning to manage their emotions. Be there to guide them through complex feelings and help them understand how to express themselves in a healthy way.
Moral and Ethical Development
Values: Children develop their sense of right and wrong during this stage. It's essential for parents to instill values such as honesty, kindness, and respect. Lead by example and teach your child about ethical behavior.
Consequences: School-age children are beginning to understand that actions have consequences. Help them learn about responsibility and accountability for their choices.
Formal Education: Most children start formal education during these years. They begin to learn essential skills like reading, writing, and math. Ensure your child has a supportive learning environment both at school and at home.
Learning Styles: Every child has their own unique learning style. Some may prefer visual aids, while others may learn best through hands-on activities. Pay attention to your child's learning preferences and adapt to them.
During school-age development, children may face challenges like peer pressure, academic stress, increased screen time, and identity issues. As a parent, it's important to be there for your child, listen to their concerns, and provide guidance through these difficulties.
Understanding school-age development is crucial for parents to provide the right support and guidance for their children. By being aware of the physical, cognitive, social, emotional, and moral aspects of this stage, parents can help their children grow into well-rounded, confident individuals who are ready to face the challenges of the world. Remember to be patient, communicate, and foster a loving, nurturing environment as your child progresses through these formative years.