The COVID-19 vaccines for children have the same active ingredients as the primary vaccines given to adults. However, children receive a smaller, age-appropriate dose that is the right size for them. Clinical trial data showed that a smaller dose for children produced a strong immune response (very similar to that of adults) and caused fewer side effects than an adult dose.
The CDC recommends eligible people 6 months and older receive an updated, bivalent Pfizer or Moderna vaccine that offers better protection against variants. For more information about the safety, efficacy, and timing of each pediatric vaccine, please visit CDC’s page about COVID-19 Vaccines for Children and Teens.