8 year old | EWmums.com

Developmental Milestones for 8 Year Olds

Your child is beginning to develop a sense of their own place in the world

By the time your child is eight years old, we're sure you've got a mini-me on your hands. Not only will they be having increasingly more adult conversations, but they'll be using sophisticated language, be able to describe ideas and experiences and will be developing stronger interests and opinions of their own.

8 year old milestones by EWmums

You can also expect your 8 year old son or daughter to begin imagining how other people feel, and what it's like to be in someone else's situation... Meaning, they'll focus less on themselves, and be more empathetic to others.

Here's what else your eight year old will no doubt be doing.

Physical Milestones

You'll probably have noticed that a lot of their awkward clumsiness as a younger child has disappeared, and their movements will become a lot more controlled and graceful.

Not only that, but thanks to a whole load of increased strength in important muscles, you may also notice the following:

  • Increased strength in arms, legs
  • Enhanced stamina
  • Better coordination and reaction time
  • Change direction while running
  • Throw more accurately
  • Jump or climb better
  • Engage in rough-and-tumble play, like chasing, wrestling or play-fighting
  • Enthusiasm for team sports
  • Dress, brush their teeth and brush their hair without help
  • Use many kitchen implements
  • Use basic tools like a hammer or screwdriver
  • Help with cooking
  • Language Milestones

    Your eight year old is likely to be fluent in speaking, and will no doubt be able to do the following:

  • Use all speech sounds, including consonant blends (e.g. whistle)
  • Use complex sentences with few grammatical errors
  • Good control of rate, pitch and volume of voice
  • Using polite language, 'please' and 'thank you' when appropriate
  • May pick up coded playground slang
  • Cognitive Milestones

    As we've mentioned, your eight year old will be developing interests and establishing opinions of their own... Meaning, they're digesting a whole load of new information every day both at home, at school and elsewhere in their lives.

    Which means you may witness the following developments in their cognitive skills:

  • More creative play
  • Thinking about several things at once
  • Can follow and remember fairly complicated instructions
  • Confident at reading and writing
  • Can create simple stories and compositions
  • Have favourite subjects at school
  • Discuss what they want to be when they grow up
  • Understand numbers, time and space much better
  • Know the date
  • Can recite days of the weeks and months in order
  • Count backwards
  • Understand simple fractions
  • Emotional and Social Milestones

    By the age of 8, your child will no doubt love being around their friends - and the opinions of these friends will become increasingly important to them. Of course, there are several other developmental milestones that your 8 year old will no doubt achieve and will be feeling.

    These include:

  • A strong need for love and understanding
  • Helpful, cheerful and pleasant - but also rude, selfish and boss at times
  • Quite sensitive, and a little dramatic
  • Succumb to peer pressure
  • Enjoy the security of regular group activities
  • Likely to follow rules they helped to create
  • Have rapidly changing emotions - angry outbursts are common
  • Can be impatient, and hate to wait for things they want
  • Can make friends easily
  • Motivated by money
  • Advice for Parents

    Your 8 year old's strong personality, interests and opinions will no doubt begin to shine through during this year of life. And you might find they need to feel a strong sense of belonging.

    Which means, as parents, now's the right age to discuss peer pressure with them. The negative repercussions of following certain peer pressure, how to handle themselves and their friends in that situation and also tell them that it's okay to talk to you if ever they're worried about something or somebody's actions.

    Listen to them and discuss their concerns about friends, their schooling and their extra curricula activities. Now is the perfect chance to develop moral and explain why things are right or wrong.

    At this age, they'll also be more open to learning about important life skills - like money, saving and the cost of living. And they may develop a need for privacy and secrets; which is fine, so long as it's in a controlled way, like in a drawer or box.

    Warning Signals

    Like we always say, children develop and grow at their own pace, so don't worry too much if your child hasn't reached all of these milestones by the age of 8.

    However, you should notice gradual progression as they get closer to 8 years, and if you don't - there may be possible developmental delays. If this is the case, please seek advice from your child's doctor.

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