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Topic – Growing Up

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Growing Up

Humans Have Life Stages

Your body has changed a lot since you were a baby. And you will continue to grow and change as you get older. Scientists and doctors say that humans go through different life stages. They have given names and ages to these stages. Not all people go through the stages at the same time. Some grow faster than others; some grow slower. But we all go through the same stages.

Life Stages of Humans

Stage

Age

Description

Infant/Toddler

0 to 3 years

• born helpless and is completely dependent on its mother for food for the first 2 years

• learns to crawl, then walk

speaks in sentences by age 3

Child

4 to 10 years

• learns to take care of itself more and more

• starts forming friendships outside of the family

Adolescent

11 to 18 years

• a period of great growth; grows taller and heavier

• begins to explore new ideas and situations

Adult

18 years and older

• body has finished changing and growing

Animals Have Life Stages, Too!

Humans are not the only animals that go through life stages. Some animals have more simple life stages. The young are like their parents, but smaller. They have two life stages—young and adult.

They grow to adults quickly, like a pet cat. Some animals have more life stages. They take a longer time to grow. One of these animals is the orangutan. Orangutans grow and change as they get older, just like you.

Life Stages of Orangutans

Stage

Age

Description

Infant

0 to 4 years

• feeds on its mother’s milk for the first 2 years

stays attached to its mother constantly for the first 2 years

Juvenile

4 to 8 years

independent of the mother but stays in her territory

• starts to look for their own food

Adolescent

Female: 8 to 15 years

Male: 8 to 13 years

• female makes contact with other adolescent females

• male is independent and moves into new territories

• male socializes with adolescent males and females

Sub-adult

Male only: 13 to 18 years

• socializes less and spends more and more time alone

• still growing; not a full-sized male yet

Adult

Female: 15 years and older

Male: 18 years and older

• female starts to have babies and lives with her babies

• male lives alone

In the life stages of the orangutan, the juvenile stage is the same as the child stage in humans.


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