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10: Middle Childhood - Physical Development
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- Describe the patterns of physical growth
- Summarize nutrition needs
- Explain the causes of obesity and the negative consequences of excessive weight gain
- Discuss the pros and cons of organized sports
- Compare and contrast developmental disorders
- Summarize several different mental health disorders
- 10.1: Brain Development
- The brain reaches its adult size at about age 7. Then between 10 and 12 years of age, the frontal lobes become more developed and improvements in logic, planning, and memory are evident. The school-aged child is better able to plan and coordinate activity using both the left and right hemispheres of the brain, which control the development of emotions, physical abilities, and intellectual capabilities. The attention span also improves as the prefrontal cortex matures.
- 10.2: Physical Growth
- Middle childhood spans the years between early childhood and adolescence, children are approximately 6 to 11 years old. These children come in all shapes and sizes: height, weight, abilities, and disabilities. Physical growth rates are generally slow and steady during these years. However, growth spurts do occur during middle to late childhood.
- 10.3: Nutritional Needs
- A number of factors can influence children’s eating habits and attitudes toward food. Family environment, societal trends, taste preferences, and messages in the media all impact the emotions that children develop in relation to their diet. Television commercials can entice children to consume sugary products, fatty fast foods, excess calories, refined ingredients, and sodium. Therefore, it is critical that parents and caregivers direct children toward healthy choices.
- 10.4: Exercise, Physical Fitness, and Sports
- Recess is a time for free play and Physical Education (PE) is a structured program that teaches skills, rules, and games. They’re a big part of physical fitness for school age children. For many children, PE and recess are the key component in introducing children to sports.
- 10.5: Physical Health
- Childhood health issues
- 10.6: Childhood Mental Health
- Mental health problems can disrupt daily life at home, at school or in the community. Without help, mental health problems can lead to school failure, alcohol or other drug abuse, family discord, violence or even suicide. However, help is available. Talk to your health care provider if you have concerns about your child’s behavior.
- 10.7: Managing Symptoms- Staying Healthy
- Being healthy is important for all children and can be especially important for children with mental health disorders. In addition to getting the right treatment, leading a healthy lifestyle can play a role in managing symptoms.
- 10.S: Summary