Physical Changes: Seventh Grade

Your child's development will:
Probably land somewhere in the very wide range of "normal" development for boys and girls of this age. How wide? Look at any seventh-grade class: Many of the girls are bigger than the boys, but some aren't; a few girls and boys still look more like little kids than teenagers; a couple of boys are quite tall and look like high school students. But most appear a little more mature than children but far from full-fledged teenagers.

Mean that he experiences hormonal changes. This in turn will cause him to be moody -- slamming doors one minute, ecstatic at a phone call from a friend the next -- and might also mean dealing with the teenage scourge: acne.

Fascinate him. He may spend a lot of time inspecting his body, looking for pimples, checking out any new sexual development or just staring at himself in the mirror, wondering how he'll turn out.

Girls
In general, a girl's growth spurt starts when she's about 9. It ends within a year of her first period, which is now at a national average of 12 1/2 years old. Her breasts are growing from the "bud" stage of the preteen years. To prevent anemia, adolescent girls need extra iron in their diets once they begin menstruating.

Boys
In general, a boy's growth spurt starts when he's about 13. He can be chubby before he starts to grow taller, and then he can seem too thin. Hair is now visible in armpits, on legs and arms, and a slight mustache will form. His sweat glands are changing, and he will probably want to start wearing deodorant. Boys can use extra iron in their diets to aid muscle growth and development.

Development Tracker
-- Social Skills
-- Language Skills
-- Physical Changes
-- Emotional Changes
-- Challenges
-- How to Help

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