Preadolescent growth and development is important in a young person's life, and many parents want to make sure that their children are growing up properly. There are many books and other resources, such as websites and television programs, about the growth of adolescent kids that parents can easily access if they want information about pre-teen development. Many changes happen throughout a child's adolescent years, from growth spurts to emotional development. These years are important for children, and parents as well.
Preadolescent Growth and Development Steps
The steps to adolescent growth and development are different for each person, though there are similarities with everyone. Generally, development starts around ten years old for girls, and around twelve years old for boys. However, development can start at a younger or older age, depending on family history and individual traits. Some signs of development and growth starting are:
- Growth spurts
- Increase in eating
- Hair growth
- Irritable or grouchy mood swings
- Friendships become more important
- Less respect toward parents at times
- Peer pressure is introduced
- Body odor
- Increase of testosterone (in males) or increase of estrogen (in females.)
- Interest in opposite sex increases
- Individual personality traits become more defined
- Breast development in females
Preadolescent growth and development is not just the physical things, such as growth spurts or body odor, there are many emotional changes in preadolescent children as well. Mood swings, disrespectful or rebellious behavior, and development of individual traits, habits and hobbies are all parts of an adolescent's growth and development. While parents might be worried when these emotional changes begin occurring, usually it is just a temporary phase and children tend to mature more as they grow older. However, if your child changes in a dramatic way, you may want to step in. Talking to your child about making good choices can help keep them out of trouble, as well as making sure they have good influences and role models to look up to. If your child begins hanging around with a group of other children who often get in trouble, you should encourage them to make other friends as well, and to hang around with them more often than the friends you do not approve of.
Websites and Books About Development
If your child is about to go through, or is going through, their adolescent years, books and websites can be a great resource for information about how to handle the pre-teen and teenage years. Many parents are hesitant about using books or other resources when looking for advice on parenting an adolescent, but just because you need a book does not mean you are a bad parent. There are many issues that parents might not know how to handle, such as drug abuse or gang activity. Though this is not always the case, there are also many books that are about the adolescent years and the changes that take place, and they offer general advice on how to raise a pre-teen. Some books about adolescent development and growth are:
- Your Adolescent: Emotional, Behavioral, and Cognitive Development From Early Adolescence Through the Teen Years by David Pruitt
- The Adolescent: Development, Relationships, and Culture by Kim Gale Dolgin
- Adolescent Development by John Dacey, Deborah Margolis, and Maureen Kenny
- Handbook of Adolescent Development by Sandy Jackson and Luc Goossens
Raising children through their adolescent years can sometimes be challenging, but very rewarding. In their adolescent years children begin to start acting more mature as they make the transition toward adulthood. Emotionally, adolescents change drastically as they develop, they begin to form stronger friendships with those they are close to already, as well as with new groups as they find new hobbies and activities that they enjoy.