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Pre-teen groupEach age and stage of parenting brings new delights and new challenges – and the pre-teen stage from around eight to 12 years is no exception.

Your little one is not so little – and they're starting on a long (and sometimes rocky) path to independence and influences beyond your family. Here, we highlight some of the recurring issues parents raise on our pre-teens Talk board – and the shared advice on how to parent older children. 

Outdoors fun


Looking to turn your sofa sloths into outdoors explorers? Mumsnetters share their tips for getting kids to play outdoors.

Birthday outing ideas

Hand on indoor climbing wall

Is there any age which cares more passionately about parties than pre-teens? We've got suggestions for outings to please the most exacting older children, come rain or shine.

Screen time

Boys glued to TV

Glued to the TV, computer, mobile, Xbox – or all of them simultaneously. Our children's screen lives can seem all-consuming. Time to set some limits?

Starting periods

Girl in leotard

The age at which girls' periods begin has been falling. So what are the signs they're about to start? And how can you help your daughter once they do?

Peer pressure

Row of converse trainers

The older your child gets, the more peer pressure will influence their behaviour, clothes and pastimes. Cue some new parenting challenges.

Talking about sexuality

Boy in blue T-shirt

Some topics are easier than others to broach with your children. We've drawn on your tips for how to talk about serious stuff.

Tackling digital overload

Woman on computer

Is your family drowning in beeping bits of technology? We have 10 tips to help you detox – and recover from digital overload.

Leaving children home alone

Girl doing homework on bed

At some point, your children will clamour to be home alone, or you'll need to start leaving them alone. It's a parenting rubicon – we've got advice before you cross it.