Latency Age, Six Years Old Through 11 Years Old Fears and anxieties continue to predominate in the reactions of children in this age group.However, the fears demonstrate an increasing awareness of real danger to self
and to the children’s signiﬁcant persons, such as family and loved ones. The reactions also begin to include the fear of damage to their environment. Imaginary fears that seem unrelated to the disaster also may appear.
Regressive behaviors may appear in this age group similar to those in the preschool group. Problem behaviors include the following: ■ bed-wetting ■ sleep terrors ■ nightmares ■ sleep problems (e.g., interrupted sleep, need for night light, or falling asleep) ■ weather fears ■ irrational fears (e.g., safety of buildings, or fear of lights in the sky)
16Reactions of Children to Disasters Additional behavior and emotional problems include: ■ irritability ■ disobedience ■ depression ■ excessive clinging ■ headaches ■ nausea ■ visual or hearing problems Te loss of prized possessions, especially pets, is very diﬃcult for children in this age group. As noted in the previous section, the school environment and relationships with peers is central to the life of latency age children. School problems begin to appear andmay take the form of: ■ refusal to go to school ■ behavior problems in school ■ poor school performance ■ ﬁghting ■ withdrawal of interest ■ inability to concentrate ■ distractability ■ peer problems (e.g., withdrawal from play groups, friends, and previousactivities or aggressive behaviors and frequent ﬁghting with friends orsiblings