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In this English lesson (ESL), you’ll learn spoken English expressions to talk about the stages of life a person goes through right from birth to his old age.
a preemie is baby that is born ‘prematurely’ – before it has completely developed in the mother’s womb. Generally it takes 37 weeks/9 months for a baby to fully develop, so if a baby is born before 37 weeks/9 months, it’s considered a preemie.
A baby that was just born; this term is usually used for the first 4 weeks of life.
An infant / a baby
The first year of life (from birth to 1 year old); an infant is a baby who has not started talking or walking yet and who needs constant care.
A child who is learning to crawl or walk
There is no set age definition of ‘a child’; ‘childhood’ can be both the time before someone becomes a teenager and the time before someone become an adult. Most of the time, it refers to someone younger than a teenager.
Pre-teen / tween
A child who is around 10–12 years old; a child who has not yet reached the ‘teenage’ years. At this stage, most pre-teens undergo puberty.
= someone who is 13–19 years old (any number with ‘teen’ in it!)
A formal term for the teenage years; someone who is becoming an adult. A teenager is someone who is between thirteen to nineteen years of age.
A young adult
Generally someone becomes an ‘adult’ at the age of 18. A young adult could be anyone over the age of 18 but before ‘middle age.’ At this age, people are concerned about their higher education and career. Even, settling down becomes important.
Middle-aged / over the hill (adjectives)
Since people are living longer, ‘middle age’ is changing. Generally, ‘middle–aged’ is the term for someone in the middle of their life, around 40–50 years old. “Over the hill” is a humorous (sometimes insulting) way of saying someone is old! So, do not use ‘over the hill’ to describe someone is middle-aged.
A senior citizen
a polite way of saying ‘an old person’! The age at which someone becomes a ‘senior citizen’ can vary from country to country: it could be 55 years old, or it could be 65 years old!
A polite way of saying that someone is very old!