Coping with tweens - a primer

BETWEEN the ages of 7 and 13, your child undergoes a fair bit of identity formation. These are the tween years, the prelude to the teenager and adult.

Your child leaves the comfort of the home and experience for the first time in formal school a social world of strangers albeit little ones like themselves for the most part. These are the years when your influence as a parent begins to come under pressure. Peer pressure is now a reality. Their world view becomes increasingly shaped by what their peers think and follow.

Understanding these changes in your child, the challenges they face as they develop their intellectual and social personalities would prepare you as parent to adjust to the competing influences in their life. Such a knowledge would facilitate your capacity to continue to be a major guiding influence and hopefully remain their trusted confidant through their ups and downs during these years, preparing them to face life confidently and responsibly in the later teenage years and beyond.

This coping guide is a reference of collated observations of general challenges during the tween years and suggestions on how to cope. However, parents would do well to be aware that each child is unique and your child management has to be tailored to your family circumstances. Thus we suggest your furthering this discussion with other onSponge parents as we all continue to grow in enlightenment on how to cope as a parent.

The early school years
The confident tweenager
From seniors to juniors