Insightful videos on the development of 9-12 year olds

Categories: General Parenting

If we could think of one word to associate with this age group, it would be attitude.

It’s not always a bad attitude, it’s just… an ATTITUDE. It means your tween will probably have a lot to say about a lot of things, regardless of whether you’ve asked for their thoughts or not. You see, they’re caught between childhood and teenagerdom, going through huge amounts of change, and expressing it through their behaviour. This can make them fractious, adorable, hilarious and terrifying, all in the course of a day’s parenting. Fun for the whole family…

Seriously, though, tween life can be tricky, for them and you. They have lots of different hormones starting to swirl around and wreak havoc, things get a bit more complicated in their social (and social media) universes and they are also the only people in the world who have problems, can you believe it? So unfair. The only answer is to make a TikTok of themselves performing a choreographed dance routine. Number #362 for the day! Jokes aside, your relationship with your child will probably undergo some change as they do, so there are some important things to be aware of (and not take personally) in this time. Here’s our roundup of the ParentTV expert insights into tweens:

WATCH: What’s with the tween/teen attitude? With Rachel Doherty

Hmm, what is with these kiddos and their sudden extra sass? Remember the days when you used to be able to tell them anything and they’d believe you because they thought you were the wisest person in the world? Eating carrots makes you see in the dark, the ice cream truck only plays music when it’s run out of ice cream, etc? Those days are gone, alas. Rachel Doherty is a social worker, mum, teacher and founder of Tweens2Teen, so if there’s anyone who can explain what to do now, it’s her.

WATCH: Let’s get practical about tweens and teens learning gratitude, with Michelle Mitchell

What they lack in gratitude, they make up for in attitude…(see above). Michelle Mitchell is well-versed in the particulars of tween moods, and she has come to our rescue with a series of practical advice videos to help parents deal with them. She offers actual strategies you can use in your home, and while she can’t personally transform your tween from prickly porcupine into a fluffy bunny again, she will help you understand more about how to avoid a skirmish with all those spikes. This vid on gratitude is particularly popular, probably because this is something that really ~grates~ on parents of tweens. 

WATCH: Talking about puberty, with Vanessa Hamilton

Vanessa Hamilton was a practicing Sexual Health Nurse when her 5-year-old asked her a question about sex that even she couldn’t answer. Awkward. Luckily for us, Vanessa turned her experience into a mission to educate kids about human sexuality and grown-ups about how to talk about it. Vanessa has developed a professional, tradie-level toolkit for parents who need to have these conversations with their kids, and her advice will save your bacon. Want to talk about sex with your kids without shrinking so far into the couch that it actually absorbs you? Start here.

WATCH: How my brain changes as I grow up, with Dr Vanessa Lapointe

Have you ever wondered exactly what is going on in the brain of your tween? Have you ever wished you could break into their mind and untangle all those wires that keep getting crossed, maybe dilute some of the hormones flooding their systems at the same time? Well, you can’t, it’s illegal, guys. But, you can get some insight from a psychologist who can explain what’s happening in the heads and hearts of 9-12 year-olds from a developmental perspective, and what that looks like from your end. Much easier!

WATCH: How to talk to girls, boys and everyone in between, with Amaze Education

Communication is one of those words that gets thrown around as a ‘soft skill’ that our kids are going to need in the employment world of the future, but really, they need it NOW. Building communication skills is essential at this time of their lives as our tweens grapple with new relationship dynamics in friendships, school and family life. In this video, your tween can learn about different communication styles, the importance of active listening, and effective self-expression. The example at the beginning will make you shudder with recognition…

WATCH: What to do when your child asks you for a smartphone, with Jason Gibson

Note that the title of this video doesn’t include the word ‘if’, but when. When your tween starts harassing you for a new device, there are a couple of things going on. There’s the thirst for things that are new and shiny (and already in the hands of friends) and there’s the whole love affair with tech in general. Jason Gibson has worked with a LOT of families who are dealing with this issue, and he has some excellent advice on it. Even if you’re not contending with the smartphone battle specifically, Jason’s videos on managing tech with your tween need to go straight into your PTV queue. You’ll thank us (him) later!

While we’re talking tweens…Has your kiddo suddenly got a desperate need for privacy? We blogged about this topic earlier. Check it out here.

More in this series..

Previously: Baby-love and their developmentToddlers and their development, Preschool and early primary

Coming up next: Teenagers!