Middle Childhood Milestones



Hi guys! Today I will be discussing three developmental milestones in middle childhood and how you (the parents) can support your children through their journey.


The first milestone is physical-motor skill development and organized sports. Your child has reached this milestone when he/she enjoys sports more, exert greater effort to improve skills, and perceives themselves as more competent in chosen sport.

Here are some ways you can support your child to reach this milestone:

  1. Build on children’s interests- allow children select their own activities and do not force 1. children into sports they do not enjoy
  2. Teach age-appropriate skills- emphasize basic skills (kicking, throwing, hitting) and simplified games with equal playing time
  3. Emphasize Enjoyment- allow children to play for fun
  4. Limit frequency and length of practice- 2 practices a week.   Younger children: 30 min each     Older: 60 min each
  5. Discourage unhealthy competition- acknowledge all participants and no all-star games
  6. Permit children to contribute to rules and strategies- Involve children in decisions aimed at ensuring fair play and teamwork

Overall, emphasize effort, improvement, participation, and teamwork.

The second milestone is cognitive self-regulation. You know that your child has reached this milestone when he/she continuously monitors their progress toward a goal, checks outcomes, and redirects unsuccessful efforts. They know about memory strategies, does well in school, takes steps to address obstacles, and has confidence in their own ability. You can support your child by pointing out important features of a task and suggesting strategies while instructing your child on problem-solving.




The third and final milestone is in the social and emotional domain- redefining self-concept. Your child will reach this milestone when they describe one’s self in terms of psychological traits, compare their own characteristics with peers, and speculate about causes of strengths and weaknesses. Also, they describe positive and negative personality traits, do not describe themselves as extreme (all-or-none ways) as often, compares performance to peers and themselves, and has perspective taking skills.

Your child will reach this milestone with elaborative parent-child conversations about past experiences which constructs a rich, positive narrative about the self. This means the child will have more complex, favorable, and coherent self-concepts.