Hi Donna, here is the draft of the first answer, I will post the final file with all the info in word doc for download. APA with cites/references will be included.
Just prior to adolescence children will generally become leaner and both genders have similarities in the physical shape or appearance. In the middle childhood period, children start losing their deciduous or baby teeth and may experience growing pains as their bones begin to lengthen and grow stronger.
The organs of the body also grow to their mature size such as the heart, lungs, and muscles of the body.
One of the first notable milestones in the physical development are growth spurts for girls around age nine to fourteen years of age and for boys twelve to seventeen. Girls will enter puberty before boys do. This is why during these years girls seem much larger than boys.
Puberty is another milestone in the adolescent years where hormonal changes affect the physical sexual makeup of children ages ten to twelve. Changes in skin such as acne may occur as hormones are being released in the body causing physical changes and temporary imbalances. As these children grow into puberty they begin to take on more adult sexual traits. Boys and girls will begin to grow hair on their bodies around their reproductive organs, legs, and underarms.
For girls, the next milestone is the onset of the menstruation cycle. The start of menstruation is called menarche. Some girls begin to experience some symptoms of PMS such as cramps and bloating prior to a monthly cycle.
Boys may experience nocturnal emissions during puberty while sleeping as dreams can trigger premature ejaculations. This is a normal occurrence for boys.
The final milestones are called the primary sexual state and the secondary sexual maturity stages. The primary sexual milestone refers to maturing of sex organs that differentiate male from female. Such as the growth of the scrotum and penis in boys and development of the uterus in girls. Both sexes reproductive organs begin develop into maturity. Girls tend to mature faster than boys and appear taller until the teen years when boys begin to catch up. After the primary and pubescent milestone teen years girls will develop breasts and hips while boys experience changes in their vocal characteristics taking on a deeper tone. These secondary sexual milestones are not directly related to reproduction yet are signs of maturation into adulthood for both sexes. Boys grow denser muscles and are heavier and grow an average of an inch or more taller over girls. The growth spurt for some continues for boys until age 18.
Edited by Toneemarie on 7/23/2010 at 10:57 PM EST