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Child Development Stages from 5 to 12 Years Old

Boys and girls go through various stages of physical and cognitive development as they grow from 5 to 12 years old
Child Development Stages from 5 to 12 Years Old

Children go through various stages of physical and cognitive development as they grow from 5 to 12 years old. Understanding the typical milestones and challenges of each stage can help parents and caregivers support their children’s growth and learning. 

Physical Development of Boys and Girls from 5 to 12 Years Old

Physical development refers to the changes in the body’s size, shape, and function. It includes aspects such as height, weight, muscle strength, motor skills, and puberty. However, some general trends can be observed across age groups and genders.

5 to 6 Years Old

At this age, children typically gain about 2 to 3 kilograms (4 to 7 pounds) and grow about 6 to 7 centimeters (2 to 3 inches) each year. They have a slim and proportionate body shape, with a low center of gravity that helps them balance and coordinate their movements. 

They can perform various motor skills, such as jumping, skipping, riding a bike, tying shoelaces,  draw complex shapes, write some letters and numbers, and use tools such as scissors and hammers. 

7 to 8 Years Old

At this age, children continue to grow at a steady pace, gaining about 3 to 4 kilograms (7 to 9 pounds) and growing about 5 to 6 centimeters (2 to 2.5 inches) each year. They have a lean and muscular body shape, with a higher center of gravity that allows them to perform more advanced motor skills, such as running, climbing, throwing, and catching. 

They can also use tools more skillfully, such as a screwdriver and a knife. They can write more clearly and neatly, and read more fluently. 

9 to 10 Years Old

At this age, children’s growth rate slows down slightly, gaining about 2 to 3 kilograms (5 to 7 pounds) and growing about 4 to 5 centimeters (1.5 to 2 inches) each year. They have a more defined and mature body shape, with a lower body fat percentage and a higher muscle mass. 

They can perform complex motor skills, such as playing sports, dancing, and doing gymnastics. They can also use tools more accurately and safely, such as a sewing machine and a drill. They can write and read more complex texts, and solve mathematical problems. 

Boys and girls begin to diverge in their physical development, as girls enter puberty earlier than boys. Girls may experience growth spurts, breast development, pubic hair, and menstruation. Boys may experience voice changes, testicular enlargement, and pubic hair.

11 to 12 Years Old

At this age, children’s growth rate varies considerably, depending on their onset and stage of puberty. Some children may gain up to 10 kilograms (22 pounds) and grow up to 15 centimeters (6 inches) in a year, while others may gain and grow much less. 

They have a more adult-like body shape, with a higher body fat percentage in girls and a higher muscle mass in boys. They can perform sophisticated motor skills, such as playing musical instruments, typing, and driving. They can also use tools more creatively and independently, such as a computer and a camera. 

Boys and girls differ significantly in their physical development, as girls are usually ahead of boys in puberty. Girls may reach their adult height and weight and have regular menstrual cycles. Boys may experience growth spurts, facial hair, and ejaculation.

Cognitive Development of Boys and Girls from 5 to 12 Years Old

Cognitive development refers to the changes in the brain’s structure, function, and processes. It includes aspects such as memory, attention, language, reasoning, and problem-solving. It also interacts with physical, emotional, and social development. However, some general trends can be observed across age groups and genders.

5 to 6 Years Old

At this age, children typically have a concrete and literal way of thinking. They rely on their senses and experiences to understand the world. They can focus on one task or item for a longer period, and follow simple instructions. They can understand concepts such as numbers, time, space, and categories. 

They can copy and repeat words and sentences, and use language for various purposes, such as requesting, describing, and narrating. They can also recognize and produce sounds, letters, and words, and read simple texts. 

7 to 8 Years Old

At this age, children typically have a more flexible and logical way of thinking. They can use their imagination and creativity to understand the world. They can focus on more than one task or item at a time, and follow complex instructions. 

They can understand concepts such as fractions, space, and cause and effect. They can use language more fluently and accurately, and use it for various functions, such as explaining, questioning, and persuading. They can also segment and blend sounds, letters, and words, and read more complex texts. 

9 to 10 Years Old

At this age, children typically have a more abstract and systematic way of thinking. They can use their reasoning and problem-solving skills to understand the world. They can focus on multiple tasks or items simultaneously, and follow multiple instructions. 

They can understand concepts such as algebra, geometry, and probability. They can use language more expressively and appropriately, and use it for various purposes, such as informing, arguing, and entertaining. They can also manipulate and analyze sounds, letters, and words, and read more diverse texts.

11 to 12 Years Old

At this age, children typically have a more advanced and integrated way of thinking. They can use their metacognition and reflection skills to understand the world. They can focus on multiple tasks or items selectively, and follow multiple instructions independently. 

They can understand concepts such as calculus, physics, and philosophy. They can use language more critically and analytically, and use it for various purposes, such as evaluating, synthesizing, and creating. They can also generate and apply sounds, letters, and words, and read more sophisticated texts. 

Girls may have an advantage in verbal skills, such as reading comprehension and writing, while boys may have an advantage in spatial skills, such as geometry and engineering.

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