Age Group: 5 – 8 years

 

Health Information: 5 – 8 years

Immunizations (from AAP)

  • Annual Influenza doses

 

Safety Information: 5 – 8 years (from www.bornlearning.org)

In the Car

Your child should ride in his booster seat until the adult seat belt fits properly, usually between 8 and 12 years old and about 4’9″ tall.

 

Street Safety

  • Be sure your child wears a bike helmet while riding a scooter or bicycle.

 

Dealing with Strangers

Tell your child that she should walk away and find an adult she knows if approached by anyone who:

  • Asks her for help.
  • Shows her a picture of a pet.
  • Asks to take her picture.
  • Tells her that there is a family emergency.
  • Calls her by name even though she doesn’t know him.
  • Simply telling your child to not talk to strangers is not good advice. Sometimes, such as when you introduce her to a friend of yours, it’s okay to talk to a stranger. Or, if your child is lost, she should know to ask someone for help

 

On the Playground

Check places your child plays for:

  • Sharp points, corners or edges, splintered wood or hot metal (such as slides).
  • Openings that might trap a child’s hands or feet, and loose cables, wires and ropes that may trip a child.
  • Equipment that is not securely anchored to the ground, including handrails, ladders and steps

 

School Issues: 5 – 8 years

Map of school districts/ links to each site for calendar of school activities

Homework helping tips: (From the US Department of Education, www.ed.gov)

  • Set a time for your child to do homework each night. If your child doesn’t have enough time for homework because of other activities, cut something out of his/her schedule. Let you child know that you think homework is important.
  • Decide on a place to do homework. This place should have good lighting and be a quiet area.
  • Take away distractions. Turn off the TV/radio/video games/internet. Take away cell or other phones. If your household is noisy, try to have everyone participate in quiet activities during this time. If distractions can’t be avoided, the library may be a good option for your child.
  • Make sure you child has supplies to complete homework (pencils, pens, erasers, ruler, etc.). Check with your school if you need assistance with obtaining supplies.
  • Take an interest in your child’s homework and school day. Ask about what he or she is learning and visit the school during events (parent-teacher conferences, recitals, etc.).
  • Find out what your child’s school expects from homework. Ask your child’s teacher how you can help your child.
  • Be available during homework time (or let a caregiver know that your child might need help with homework). Don’t do your child’s homework for him/her and find out if your child’s teacher wants homework done without help.
  • Look at homework that your child has finished. Read teacher comments after your child gets their homework returned.
  • Set a limit for TV/Video Games. It can be easy to want to play one more game or watch one more show. Your child needs time to complete homework each night.
  • Help your child stay organized.
  • Talk about good school work habits (not waiting until the last minute, taking practice tests, reading directions FIRST, skipping difficult questions on tests and coming back to them at the end, etc.)
  • If your child seems frustrated, let him or her take a break. Tell him or her that you KNOW he or she can do it.
  • Praise your child and encourage effort.

 

Bullying tips:

What is Bullying? (From the University of Colorado at Boulder, Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence, Safe School Fact Sheets, Bullying Prevention: An Overview of Bullying)

Bullying is an intentional harming of another person that occurs repeatedly over time. The bully has power over the people he or she bullies. It can take many forms including:

  • Physical violence
  • Verbal threats or harassment (including spreading rumors)
  • Indirect bullying through: intentionally leaving someone out, social isolation, obscene gestures
  • Cyber-bullying (instant messages, chat rooms, myspace/facebook pages)

 

Signs that your child is being bullied (from US Dept. or Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Admin, National Mental Health Information Center, www.samhsa.gov)

  • Your child comes home with dirty/damaged/torn clothes, books, or other property
  • Your child often “loses” things and can’t explain what happened
  • Your child comes home with injuries/cuts/bruises and can’t explain what cause them
  • Your child’s grades decline and he or she loses interest in going to school
  • Your child doesn’t spend time with peers after school and doesn’t bring classmates over to his/her house
  • Your child is hesitant/scared/nervous before going to school
  • Your child takes strange routes to go to and from school
  • Your child seems unhappy/depressed or can have mood swings and become irritated/angry
  • Your child has headaches, stomach aches, less of an appetite
  • Your child’s sleep is disturbed- can have nightmares or cry during sleep
  • Your child steals money or asks for extra money (this can be used to give to bullies)

 

What you can do if your child is being bullied (from US Dept. or Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Admin, National Mental Health Information Center, www.samhsa.gov)

  • Take the situation seriously. Don’t assume that it is ok or that everyone gets bullied.
  • Focus on your child. Listen to him/her, don’t blame him/her, empathize, ask questions to find out details of the situation (Who? What? How often? Where?), do NOT suggest that your child “fight back,” and don’t let your emotions take over during the next steps.
  • Contact the school (through the social worker, teacher, principal, guidance counselor) and voice your concerns (don’t let emotions take over). Make sure the school takes the situation seriously too.
  • Work with the school. Let the school know you want to work together with them.
  • Have school personnel attempt to set up a meeting between you and the bully’s caregiver(s). Don’t contact the bully’s caregiver(s) yourself.
  • Guarantee that your child is protected at school. Communicate with the school and ensure that teachers/administrators are aware of the situation and are closely monitoring it.
  • Encourage your child to meet friendly classmates and to spend time with them outside of school.
  • Help your child meet friends in different environments (clubs, sports, volunteering)

 

Signs that your child is a bully (from US Dept. or Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Admin, National Mental Health Information Center, www.samhsa.gov)

  • Your child is often aggressive, spiteful, and disagrees with/opposes almost everything
  • Your child seems to have a need to be in control and/or dominate over others
  • Your child seems to manipulate others
  • Your child teases, harasses, or insults others (and seems to enjoy doing it)

 

What you can do if your child is a bully(from US Dept. or Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Admin, National Mental Health Information Center, www.samhsa.gov)

  • Let your child know that you take bullying seriously and that it is not acceptable.
  • Make clear rules for your child and consistently follow them. Use punishments (not physical or hostile) when rules are broken.
  • Praise your child when he or she is following rules.
  • Find out about your child’s activities (so that you can monitor them) and spend more time with him or her.
  • Encourage your child to become involved in activities that promote positive social behaviors like music, non-violent sports or clubs.
  • Work with school personnel and let them know you are concerned about your child. Ensure that school personnel are not tolerating any bullying.
  • Seek the help of a counselor or mental health provider if you or your child needs additional support.

 

Building Relationships with School Staff (from the U.S. Department of Education, www.ed.gov)

  • Meet with your child’s teacher(s) early in the school year. Set an appointment to talk or stop in after school and introduce yourself.
  • Let your child’s teacher(s) know if he or she is having problems with homework. Work together to figure out a plan that will work for your child.
  • When meeting with or talking to your child’s teacher(s), remember that you are both working together. Approach teachers while keeping this in mind.
  • Make sure that you understand what the teacher expects from you and your child. Make sure that the teacher understands what you and your child expect from him or her.
  • Keep communicating with teachers throughout the year. Don’t wait for your child to get in trouble (or have a problem) to meet the teacher! If you only talk about negative things, your relationships with teachers will be negative.

 

Discipline Information: 5 – 8 years

  • Don’t just use the word “no.” Offer choices for different behaviors and PRAISE your child when he or she is doing something you like. Children want acceptance and approval from you- help them understand what behaviors will get them there.
  • Give your child some choices. Make sure that you can accept any of the choices that they may choose.
  • Acknowledge your child’s feelings.
  • Present reasonable consequences. It is not reasonable to say “if you do that one more time, you can never play with Joey again.” A child will learn that the consequences will not actually happen and will not take you seriously.
  • Tantrums can still occur at this age! Don’t be surprised if your child throws one.
  • Stay calm when your child is having a tantrum. Go into a different room if you can or focus on a different activity (read a magazine, write a note).
  • Having a tantrum is not as much fun when no one is paying attention to you! Ignore, ignore, ignore!
  • Do not give in to your child’s demands while they are having a tantrum. If you do, they will learn that tantrums can get them what they want if they do it for long enough.
  • Let your child know that you will talk with them when they are calm, then stick to your word.