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schoolchild / schoolchildren

hirashin

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Hello, native English speakers,

What exactly is a schoolchild? Would the word be used in both the U.S. and the U.K.?
According to my dictionaries, it means "a child who goes to school".
Then can it mean a high school student?

I've found the phrase "elementary schoolchildren", but do you ever say "high schoolchildren" instead of "high school students"?

Thanks in advance.

Hirashin
 

johnnyG

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do you ever say "high schoolchildren" instead of "high school students"?

No.

Maybe HS kids, if you were not around them, since high schoolers maybe not want to be called kids.

IMO, high schoolers may still be kids, but they are not children. Not at all.
 
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Eh, this is pretty much a cultural thing, not a linguistic thing. Where I'm from (in Michigan), referring to adolescents as "kids" is perfectly normal, while referring to them as "children" can be kind of demeaning. But at the same time, "child" is often used to mean "minor" (as in, under the age of majority, which is 18 years). So it's really context sensitive.

If you're not sure, "student" is always perfectly fine. You never need to use "schoolchild" or "schoolchildren".
 

hirashin

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Thank you for the help, johnnyG and Julimaruchan. I didn't know "kids" and "children" are different.
 

OoTmaster

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Child usually refers to people that have not yet gone through puberty. So usually age 10 and younger. While kids usually refers to someone under the age of 18. All though teenagers under the age of 18 usually don't like to be referred to as children or kids.
 
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