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Child Development - The Ten Year Old

The Ten Year Old At Home

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Ten is respectful of the authority of parents and teachers. He tries to avoid guilty feelings or punishment by following the expectations and demands of the adults in his life. But, if he perceives a command or punishment as unfair, he can become extremely angry at the authority figure.

Parents often become frustrated at the ten year old's sloppiness and lack of follow-through on household chores. Chore charts may help with motivation, but it's a rare ten year old who cleans his room or performs chores on his own initiative.

The best discipline approach with a ten year old is talking and planning. Ten needs to be taught to verbalize feelings and thoughts when dealing with internal and external conflicts. When ten gets the message that it's not OK to talk about the things that bother her, she will withdraw into internal coping thoughts and fantasies. Ten doesn't have the mature internal structures for resolving difficulties in her life. She needs to talk to parents and teachers to ground her problem solving in reality.

Because Ten has developed planning skills, the most effective discipline approach focuses on firm, clear, and concrete expectations and planning for good behavior.

Next > Skills to Begin Fifth Grade

Child Development - The Ten Year Old

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