good boat for 11-year-old

My 11-year-old son may be getting interested in kayaking or canoeing. He currently enjoys coming along with us on paddles down gentle, class-II rivers. For these trips he joins my wife in a tandem inflatable Sea Eagle. His sister recently bought a cheapie Pelican kayak at Dick’s, which fits her well and allows her independence on these trips and is fueling her budding interest in someday upgrading to a whitewater boat. My son has tried out his sister’s Pelican, and it seems to me he’s just a bit small in that boat to be able to comfortably endure a 2-4 hour trip on his own. He’s about 4’ 7" and about 70 lbs.

I’m wondering if there’s a good introductory boat for him, or if I’m wrong in imagining he’s a bit small for one of the cheapie rec boats. I know there are whitewater play boats that are sized for very small kids, but I think he wouldn’t enjoy a mild river too much in a whitewater boat, the prices are a little high for a boat he may grow out of pretty quickly.

Also thrown into the mix is that he seems a little more intrigued by canoes than kayaks, but I’m not aware of any smaller canoes (though I’m not well educated in that area at all).

A used boat would be fine, though we’re in NE Tennessee where there’s not a wide choice in used boats locally.

Any suggestions?

Prodigy XS
I have two prodigy xs boats by Perception for my kids and they love them. One is 10 and around 90# and the other 7 and around 45#.

They paddle small lakes and lake Erie with me and log 3-5 each trip. The boat is small and rated to 150# if I recall correctly.

I won’t dare to suggest a boat, but I will say my 11 year old same height and weight paddles a mad river outrage. Is he small for the boat? Yes! He looks like an autumn leaf floating down river. But, he handles the boat just fine, and I’d follow his lines down the Hiwassee any time. Single blade paddlers are few and the learning curve a little steeper I’d guess, but I think it’s a good skill to know, but I admit I’m a little biased toward canoes. He could always carry your gear down river for ballast. You should be able to pick up an old WW canoe for $500 and sell it for the same amount if it doesn’t work out.

If you can find one
Wilderness Systems Piccolo, outstanding boat for kids and small adults. Recently put my 7 year old granddaughter in one and she did great. Paddle makes a difference too. Patrick from ONNO made me a kids paddle, 2 piece adjustable length, with carbon shaft and plastic blades, Perfectly sized for my granddaughter.

This is what my kids used
I had a Perception acadia scout kayak with a werner little sprite paddle and a Sawyer starfire canoe with a 42in grey owl paddle. Hopefully your kids will take to paddling…mine did not.