The Normal Child Behavior for a Seven Year Old

The behavior of a 7-year-old is influenced by many factors, including physical and emotional development and environment. Every child is unique, and no child will exhibit the same mannerisms or behaviors as another. However, some typical social, cognitive and physical behaviors are exhibited by 7-year-old.

Social Behavior

Your 7-year-old has probably developed significant attachments to her friends. She likely has a best friend and perhaps even someone she identifies as an enemy. At this age, most of your child's friends are of the same sex, and boys and girls often participate in separate activities. According to Dr. J. Stephen Fountain, writing for the the Diabetes Education Center of Lancaster, South Carolina, children at this age attempt to learn rules through tattling and are focused on winning in a competitive nature.

In addition to her relationship to friends, your 7-year-old is family-focused. She likes affection and attention from parents and models the beliefs of parents in regards to what is good and bad.

Cognitive Behavior

Girl (5-7) playing acoustic guitar on bed, low angle view

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Your 7-year-old can pay attention for longer periods of time and can understand and follow less-detailed instructions. He probably displays curiosity and a desire to share his knowledge with others. As his literacy instruction progresses, he will likely show large strides in his reading and writing and begin to read on an independent basis with much pleasure. Your 7-year-old has likely developed some mathematical skills as well and can add and subtract simple numbers.

While your child explores and progresses in instruction-based areas, he will also begin to explore his sense of self and the rules he must adhere to. Imitating the actions of friends and peers is common at this age, and, according to MedlinePlus, he may lie, cheat or steal as he explores his own identity and the rules placed upon him.

Physical Behavior

Your 7-year-old enjoys a multitude of physical activities, from playing in the backyard to shooting a ball through a basketball hoop. These activities help make her physically adept and provide her with strong large-motor skills. Fine-motor skills are still developing, making handwriting and tying shoes still difficult. Your 7-year-old may tire quickly and generally requires 10 to 12 hours of sleep per night.


Girl (5-7) playing acoustic guitar on bed, low angle view

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Children suffering from developmental or cognitive delays may not present with behavior typical of a 7-year-old. Your child should be assessed based on his mental acuity, with handicaps taken into consideration. In addition to developmental and cognitive delays, psychological disorders may cause a delay in the appearance of typical behaviors and should be considered.


Parents often think that their child should show normal behaviors and become concerned when he does not show signs of every typical behavior. The common misconception that all children develop at the same rate and all 7-year-old children should be behaving in the same manner is unfounded. Your child's development is unique and is based not only on his age but also his experiences. Presentation of behaviors and abilities will depend on what he has and has not been exposed to, as well as biological factors.