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Some kids will be satisfied with a group of friends and not have one confidant.In 8th grade, kids are looking ahead to the freedom they’ll have in high school and most likely thinking about—maybe even stressing out about—relationships and dating.As parents give their 8th grader more responsibility, they need to be on alert for inappropriate reactions to newfound freedom.Kids at this age are more prone to risk-taking, says Jerry Parks, a teacher at Georgetown Middle School in Kentucky; “as their world and individuality expands, they become more likely to test authority to evaluate how flexible the system at home and school will become.”But this doesn’t mean a child is becoming a troublemaker.Unfortunately, kids at this age are often hard-pressed to see the point of homework, and they are frequently too disorganized to turn it in when they do take time to do it. “Parents should assign a required homework time—generally 10 minutes per grade level, in total, per night.Cell phones, TV, MP3 players, online time, and such should be strictly off limits,” Parks says.And it’s a year when, as a parent, you still have the power to pull those reins tight when necessary.For more information, read “8th Grade Academics: What To Expect” Acrostic Poems Checklists, Calendars, etc.
“You can definitely see the maturing take place between 7th and 8th grades....At school, most 8th graders are comfortable with middle school and relish being the oldest kids in the building.“They want us to recognize their ascent to being kings of the hill,” Patton says. Parents should give their 8th grader increasing responsibilities yet be ready to rein them back in when necessary.“They must allow a certain measure of hormone-driven irrationality and not assume that their parenting skills up to this point have been all for naught.”Continue the routine of asking your child “How was your day?” But don’t take it personally if your child continues to keep you in the dark about much of his school life.
Eighth grade is the year kids turn 13 or 14, making them full-fledged teenagers, an intimidating concept for parents.