The Trials and Tribulations in the Life of a Middle School Child
Middle School can be a difficult time in the life of a child. Other than birth to 6 months of age, some of the most dramatic changes in a person’s life occur between the ages of 10-15. The only difference is that young adolescents are completely aware of the changes taking place and need to figure out how to deal with them. As parents, this period of pre-teen/teenage years can be even more difficult to understand.
One of the most difficult aspects of being a middle school aged child is dealing with friendships. This time in a child’s life can sometimes lead to the end of elementary school relationships, the building of new ones, and at times, being the child whose friend has moved on to a new circle. As parents, it is extremely difficult to see your child go through these changes in their social circles. Your child may choose to leave you out of any conversations about their friendships, which at this age is common. During this time it can be helpful to encourage out of school activities to help foster new relationships. Helping your child to build his or her self esteem can help your child overcome the loss of a friendship. Being a good listener and reassuring your child that all relationships have their ups and downs, can help your child get through a rough patch.
Forgetfulness is very common in middle school aged children. At this age, your child’s mind is so busy with issues that they believe to be of the upmost importance, it is highly likely he or she will forget a worksheet at home or a textbook in the locker. Children at this age tend to have anxiety about self image, therefore looking great in the morning surpasses picking up a homework folder on the way out the door. As a parent, you can help by giving constant reminders to your child about the more significant items they need for school. As time passes, he or she will begin to remember what is needed and independently be able to have everything necessary for the day.
Another common sign of pre-adolescence is irritability. As hormones are changing inside your middle schooler, mood swings can be very unpredictable. As confusing as it can be to a parent during this time, it is even more confusing for your child. Stepping back from an argument and allowing him/her time can help. When his/her mood swings back to the happy child you know so well, take the opportunity to talk about the issue that you or your child may have.
While these are only a few of signs that your child has entered the beloved middle school age, there are many other changes that you and your child will face during these few years. The Middle School team is here to help guide you and your child through this time and provide any assistance that may be needed. I hope that this information has been helpful for you and that you will enjoy the experience of being a Middle School Parent!
Middle School Principal