Sport and Play for Child Development
The school-age years are a time of steady growth and development. Staying physically active during this developmental phase will strengthen the fundamental skills needed to lead a healthy and active life as an adult. These skills include agility, balance, coordination, and endurance. Developing these skills will have a tremendous impact on your child’s confidence and self-esteem, as well as providing them with an ongoing sense of accomplishment and independence.
What things typically can your children do? As your child continues to grow, you will notice new and exciting abilities that your child develops. While children may progress at different rates and have diverse interests, the following are some of the common milestones children may reach in this age group:
- 6- to 7-year-olds:
- Enjoys many activities and stays busy
- Likes to paint and draw
- May lose first tooth
- Vision is as sharp as an adult's vision
- Practices skills to become better
- Jumps rope
- Rides a bike
- 8- to 9-year-olds:
- More graceful with movements and abilities
- Jumps, skips, and chases
- Self dress and groom
- Can use tools
- 10- to 12-year-olds:
- Remainder of adult teeth will develop
- Likes to sew and paint
- If your child is showing an interest in a particular sport or activity, encourage them to join an organized or recreational club or team. Sports are an excellent way to strengthen agility, coordination and socialize.
- • Walk or ride a bike to the nearest park to kick or throw a ball around. Climb, swing, slide and hang to let off steam at the local playground.
- • The winter is a great time to stay active. Attending weekly indoor clubs such as gymnastics, martial arts, dancing, swimming etc will improve balance, endurance, and agility no matter what the weather. But there are inexpensive ways to have fun in the winter, too. These include exploring in the woods, building dens and hide outs. Test out the new wellies jumping in puddles on wet walks and make snowmen, sledge and have snowball fights when it snows.