Eight years old is an exciting time in your child’s development. They’ll be able to speak, listen, play and tell stories in new ways. Here are some examples you might notice:
Your eight-year-old can listen to questions or instructions and work out which bit is important. They know to ask more questions if they don’t understand. They can understand more than one instruction at once, like: ‘Choose a person from the story we’ve just read, tell me how they feel at the end of the story and why you think that is.’
Your child will be learning lots of new words. They can group words by their meaning, not just how they sound. They can play word-guessing games and know how to compare words in lots of different ways, like opposites.
They will also like asking lots of questions, including ‘why’ questions. Their way of speaking will be starting to sound more grown up sometimes.
Your child will be getting better at telling stories too. They’ll be able to use plot, interesting words and the right order of time. They’ll know what you already know in the story. They will also be able try to guess what happens next when they hear a story.
Playing with others
At this age, children are getting better at mixing with others and making friends. They know how to take turns, listen to others and talk about something other than themselves. You might notice them picking up words they’ve heard from other people.
All children learn different things at different times. No two are the same. If your child is doing some of these things, but not all of them, this is normal.
If you’re worried about how they’re getting on, speak to their teacher or headteacher. They should be able to give you some simple ways to help at home.
If you need more help, here are some places which may be able to give you advice:
Talking Point - 0845 225 4071
Afasic - 0845 355 5577
SOS!SEN: Special Educational Needs - 020 8538 3731
IPSEA: Independent Parental Special Education Advice - 0800 018 4016
Contact a Family - 0808 808 3555
I CAN - 020 7843 2544