Physical changes are the most noticeable in young adolescents. There can be significant differences in height, weight and physical maturity between the sexes. Within a year 8 cohort there may be a 6-8year span in physical development. Uneven bone and muscle growth can produce growing pains and sudden changes in weight or muscle development results in awkwardness. The cartilage in certain areas of the skeleton such as the tailbone hardens. Accompanying these physical changes are hormonal imbalances.
As a result of these physical changes, teenagers experience alternating periods of extreme restlessness and fatigue. They will have trouble sitting still for long periods of time and their appetite will increase due to rapid growth spurts. Good nutrition, rest and physical activity are all important during this time.
At CCC we have introduced “brain breaks” to allow students opportunities to break from what they are doing to stretch and move around. Alternative types of seating are being used in many classrooms to respond to different needs for comfort.
– Article by Vicki Venz (Head of Middle Years)