The teenage years tend to elicit more concern on the part of parents, but the pre-teen years are actually an equally dramatic stage in a child’s development. Kids between the ages of 8 and 12 are already beginning to experience some pretty major shifts: their bodies are changing, they start caring more about what their peers think and they’re becoming more independent from mom and dad. The tween years are also when many kids get their first phone, which has become a major rite of passage. Parents can do a lot to help support tweens as they begin this new chapter — and lay the groundwork for healthy communication during the teenage years.
This week, the Child Mind Institute is offering a roundup of some of their best articles about pre-teens. You’ll see tween parenting tips, ideas for boosting self-esteem during a sensitive stage, advice about when to get that first phone and more. You’ll also see descriptions of social anxiety and OCD, since those are two disorders that often first appear during these years.
- What Parents Should Know About Tweens
All about the changes in early adolescence that lead to independence but also self-consciousness, emotional volatility and new, challenging behaviors.
- 10 Tips for Parenting Your Pre-teen
Keeping lines of communication open, even as kids push for more independence, will pay off in the turbulent years of adolescence.
- When Should You Get Your Kid a Phone?
A checklist of things to consider when you're trying to decide if he's ready to handle the responsibility, and the risks.
- My 12-year-old daughter acts much older than she is. How do I rein her in?
Be open with her about your concerns, and don't be afraid to set limits.
- 13 Ways to Boost Your Daughter's Self-Esteem
Despite our body-obsessed culture, parents can help girls build confidence based on what they can do, not what they look like.
- Why You Should Have Frank Sex Talks With Kids
Starting the talk when kids are still young means it will be less embarrassing — and you set the expectation for continued communication down the road.
- What Is Social Anxiety?
When worry about how you appear to others, and fear of embarrassment, keep you from doing things you need (and want) to do.
- What Does OCD Look Like in the Classroom?
How to recognize the signs that a child is struggling, even if he is hiding his anxiety.