Child Growth Stages: 7-8 Years

Your pediatrician at Northwest Pediatrics will discuss your 7-to-8-year-old child's growth stage with you at the appropriate visit. Here are a few things that you'll want to be aware of during the 7-to-8-year growth stage.

At age 7, your child's curiosity will undoubtedly have reached a whole new level. Most questions may contain a single word, "Why?" or something as complex as "where do babies come from?" Your seven year old now has a longer attention span than ever and a thirst to know more about the world around them to match. Answer questions simply but provide enough information to satisfy your child.

If you haven't already introduced your 7-to-8-year-old to household chores, now is the time. Set reasonable expectations but make sure your child follows through. Mean what you say and say what you mean; at this age your child learns whether you mean business so if you don't consistently follow through at this point in time, your child won't expect you to follow through in the future, either.

Set an example for your seven-year-old to imitate and your child is sure to follow. Everything you say or do will be remembered, very likely rehearsed, and, even more likely, will be acted upon.

Be sure to give praise when praise is due: When your child makes good grades at school, helps others, or behaves well, praise is due along with a warm hug.

If you make a promise, keep it. The simplest way to do this is to only make promises that you know you can keep. This goes back to the adage, "mean what you say, say what you mean." Nothing is more frustrating to your seven-year-old than last-minute changes. Your child sees it as going back on your word. Done frequently, your child learns that you can't be trusted.

Listen when your 7-to-8-year-old is talking. If you're easily distracted during the conversation, stop whatever is distracting you. Your child needs to know that you respect him and will listen. His worries may seem insignificant to you but, to him, they're huge. Listen to him now and chances are good that he'll come to you for comfort and guidance the rest of your life.

Enough cannot be said about the importance of an active lifestyle. Sedentary children do not mature as rapidly as active children. Rather than sending your child outdoors to play, set aside time to go out there and play with her. Setting a time limit for "screen time" is a great way to keep children active; it's likely if they're not in front of a TV or computer they're doing something active.

The best advice to parents is to sit down together at the kitchen table and having a family meal, be it breakfast, lunch, or dinner. This is an excellent time to spend sharing healthy foods, good eating habits, quality time and light-hearted conversation. Studies show that families that eat dinner together regularly eat healthier and have stronger relationships.

For more valuable suggestions on your 7-to-8-year-old child's growth stage, be sure to download and print our parent handout for 7-to-8-year-olds.

Our pediatricians are vested in the well-being of all of our patients, so if you need a pediatrician, look no further than Northwest Pediatricians. You may contact us with questions or stay up to date with your child's development by subscribing to our newsletter.