11 Years

Discover tips, tools, and support for this age

As your child continues to grow, they’ll start taking more responsibility. They may also share their thoughts and opinions more. Asking about school will help you stay involved in their classes and friendships! Learn more below about your 11-year-old’s development, resources available during and after school, and free events happening across NYC. 


Skills children develop as they play, learn, speak, act, and move are called milestones. Learn about milestones to help you understand your child's development and act early if you have concerns.

Around 11 years old, many children:

  • Social

    • Take care of everyday tasks such as brushing teeth and doing homework
    • Understand the effects of their actions more
    • Begin to rethink their own values and moral principles
    • Begin to take responsibility for their own behavior
    • Become more self-conscious about their image
  • Communication

    • Understand and use more advanced words
    • Put together more complex sentences
    • Pair words with facial expressions and gestures for emphasis
  • Learning

    • Are more able to challenge ideas
    • Have a better long-term memory
    • Develop solutions and answers based on logic
  • Physical Development

    • Have a bigger appetite, particularly during growth spurts or periods of higher activity
    • Begin to show signs of puberty (especially girls)
    • Show improved muscle strength
  • Health

    • Have 5 to 6 ounces of grains daily (such as 1 bagel plus 1–2 slices of bread)
    • Have 2 to 2 ½ cups of vegetables daily (such as 1 medium baked potato plus 2 medium carrots)
    • Have 1 ½ cups of fruits daily (such as 1 medium or large apple OR 1 ½ cups 100% fruit juice)
    • Have 5 ounces of meat and beans daily (such as 1 small chicken breast plus ½ cup of beans)
    • Have 3 cups of milk daily
    • Do 1 hour of medium- to high-intensity physical activity each day, including many 15-minute periods of activity
    • Sleep about 9–11 hours per day
    • Stay on schedule with shots

Act early by talking to a doctor, teacher, or social worker if your child:

  • Act Early

    • Can't see things from another's point of view
    • Avoids any type of sport or exercise
    • Seems quiet, shy, and distant in conversation or in class
    • Doesn't spend time with friends outside of school
    • Can't read or tell a short story on their own using full sentences
    • Doesn't want to eat meals with the family


Find the support your family needs to thrive

School's Out NYC (SONYC)

NYC Department of Youth & Community Development (DYCD)

After school program for middle schoolers

SONYC offers a mix of activities, including leadership, Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM), literacy, academic help, sports, arts, and more.

School Food

NYC Department of Education (DOE)

Free school breakfast and lunch

NYC students can enjoy free breakfast and lunch every school day.

School-Based Health Centers (SBHC)

NYC Department of Education (DOE); NYC Department of Health & Mental Hygiene (DOHMH)

Free health care in schools

Students can get free health care in their school.