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Developmental Characteristics of Young Adolescents

Adolescence is a critical time of identity formation. With the onset of puberty comes an explosion of growth of many kinds: physical, intellectual, emotional, social, moral, and spiritual. Understanding the nature and scope of adolescent development and responding appropriately requires patience, empathy, and a sense of humor. Young people “progress” through adolescence, no two following the same pathway. Most sixth graders show signs of emerging traits, while many eighth graders exhibit more pronounced characteristics.

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