There can be both advantages and disadvantages to looking older than you actually are.However when a child is still of school going age it can have distinct disadvantages .These can be classified broadly into two points.
Exceptionally Tall Children
From when children begin at school even in Pre K phase teachers ,parents and classmates will initially raise their expectations for children who seem to be older than they actually are.
There is a huge difference in the verbal skills of a three year old and a five year old . The children who are exceptionally tall for their age are expected to be able to verbalize and explain actions and fears .Allowances are made for a three year old but perhaps not for a five year old .Whilst classroom teachers who deal with the child on a day to day basis will be understanding and tolerant ,teachers who are supervising in other school situations I.e. playground may not be . These children are still little kids but trapped in a big body .
Children who are much taller than their age are often teased by other children . This is often the case particularly in pre and teen years . This is the time when self esteem is usually at its most venerable . Children do not like to be different from others .Teasing that the child looks like a giraffe or a giant can be very damaging in particular to sensitive children .
Often when a child looks older and taller than they actually are they get blamed for actions, as they are expected to be mature and know better .Teachers and parents can have unrealistic expectations .Teachers seem to expect much more maturity from physically taller kids .
When in high school parents can actually discourage their children from dating a very tall teen . They often do not realize or understand that their fifteen year old daughter is dating another fifteen year old who actually seems to be at least eighteen as he is so tall !
Girls who develop early
Girls who develop physically earlier than their friends can experience many social problems when at school.
Girls who experience puberty a few years earlier than their classmates often are mistaken for being older than they actually are . When a girl of ten is already wearing a large size bra people automatically think that she must be a few years older as she has matured . Also these girls often become a source of novelty with their classmates who have yet to mature .Playing with dolls when you have a C cup is frowned upon whilst its accepted when you look ten still .
When girls who have physically matured early start to date they are often thought of as being promiscuous just because they have big breasts.Older students will take more interest in them thinking that in fact they are older .
It is also difficult to find suitable clothing for school when students are not required to wear school uniforms .All your underdeveloped friends are wearing the latest crop top to school but for you it has just become a bit too suggestive,having developed earlier than them .
As with taller than their age kids ,those girls who look older than their classmates may be teased . Teens in particular do not want to look any different from their friends .Self esteem may suffer .
Both teachers and parents have parts to play in making sure that children who look older than their age are not teased or picked on for looking different .Talk to these children make sure they are not being bullied and help them understand the advantages of their difference .