How emotions affect your child’s education

How emotions affect your child’s education

Science is revealing how children's feelings help and harm learning. Here's how adults can support kids so they feel, and learn, better. “Honk,” says my 9th grade French teacher on the first day of school. “En français, your name is ‘Honk’.” “Excuse me,” I bleat in front of 35 classmates. “My name is Hank.” “Non, incorrect,” she replied. “En français, and in this class, your name se prononce ‘Honk’.” For two wretched years, I was called Honk by this cruel teacher and snickering students. Five times weekly, I entered the classroom twitching with fear, rage, and shame. The ordeal crippled my self-esteem and GPA. My grade lurked between C- and D because I refused to study for my persecutor. I hated the teacher (mutilating her face in my yearbook), and I subsequently hated the language. My negative emotions destroyed my learning ability. Research indicates my pitiful French performance was a... Read more

Why manners matter: Top tips for raising kind kids

Why manners matter: Top tips for raising kind kids

The benefits of teaching kids to be considerate early on go well beyond good manners, with research suggesting that raising young children to be kind is crucial for their development. Having a child that knows when to say please and thank you is just one aspect of why parents should be raising kids to be considerate toward others from an early age. A study by academics in the psychology department at the Canadian University of British Columbia, published in 2012, examined the effect on toddlers when they demonstrated “prosocial” behavior, which refers to showing kindness and generosity toward others. It found that before the age of two, “toddlers exhibit greater happiness when giving treats to others than receiving treats themselves.” The study also showed that children were happier after engaging in “costly giving – forfeiting their own resources – than when giving the same treat at no cost.” Lara Aknin,... Read more

“Simple Tasks Seem Overwhelming to My Child”

Take your pick — the misconstrued labels for children with inattentive ADHD (once called ADD) are as vast and varied as the symptoms they manifest. Often misunderstood — or worse, neglected — at school, children with ADHD face unique challenges complicated by outdated ADHD stereotypes. Here, ADDitude readers share the biggest challenges their children with inattentive ADHD face at school and home. What struggles does your child with predominantly inattentive ADHD encounter? Share your stories in the Comments section below. “Mind-wandering is a challenge for my daughter when she needs to complete schoolwork, especially reading. She has a hard time focusing and will fixate on sounds around her (ticking clock, hallway conversation, foot-tapping classmate, etc.) rather than the one sound she needs to hear: Her teacher’s voice. However, her inattentiveness and mind-wandering are a total asset when she’s drawing, writing, or creating because it allows her to be fluid, make... Read more

Managing High Sensitivity, Then and Now

There was no end to “cures” for hysteria in the nineteenth century. From leeches to rosewater to vaginal suppositories, the number and type of cures rival the myriad purported causes. But despite the doctor’s different recommendations in their treatments, one thing remains consistent: all emphasized curing hysteria, rather than just managing it. When it comes to treating today’s HSP, there are methods for coping with emotional regulation; however, the literature for the most part emphasizes the positives as well, suggesting that one would not want to eradicate but rather support one’s sensitivity for individual and social betterment. Seventy-one percent of the population claims to be either highly sensitive or moderately sensitive. [1] The shift away from cure for those on the high and medium scales of the HSP continuum signals a different regard for people’s everyday sensorial-emotional experiences. Treating Hysteria in Victorian Times Whereas some Victorian physicians sought to treat... Read more

The ADHD Guide to Naturally Flowing, ‘Normal’ Conversations

There’s a general assumption that people know the unspoken, unwritten, often mysterious rules of social engagement. These assumptions do not account for the experience of living with neurodiversity. Either way, it’s never too late to learn how to have a conversation. Communication can be tricky for people with ADHD, who may interrupt too much, speak too quickly, or space out unintentionally and miss key elements of a conversation. As a result, many individuals worry that they will say something stupid in conversation, or that they’ll try so hard to appear “normal” that they end up looking strange. The task becomes so daunting, people may question their ability to engage in naturally flowing, comfortable conversations. There’s a general assumption that people know the unspoken, unwritten, and often mysterious rules of social engagement. These assumptions do not account for the experience of living with neurodiversity — some people with ADHD, learning differences,... Read more

Mental health in the workplace: The coming revolution

Lenny Mendonca, the former chief economic and business advisor to California governor Gavin Newsom, went public with why he had suddenly resigned from that position on April 10. Mendonca, a former McKinsey senior partner, revealed his struggles with debilitating depression in a deeply personal column that also probed the pervasiveness of mental health issues among the general population and the public-policy implications of untreated mental illness. Three weeks prior to his resignation, suffering severe depression, Mendonca had checked into a hospital for an overnight stay. But, acting in his position of great responsibility, in the middle of the COVID-19 crisis, Mendonca had “told myself and my team that we all have to operate at 120 percent. . . . This meant 80-hour work weeks and barely sleeping.” Reflecting on his diagnosis and months-long process of recovery, Mendonca wrote: “What does it say about me that I have a mental health... Read more

Follow these tips to help your children deal with negative body image

If we don’t over think the aspects of our appearance that we don’t like and accept them as they are, we are more likely to have a positive self-image of ourselves. A positive self-image leads to healthy lifestyle choices as well as positive thoughts and behaviours. Certain teenagers are body shamed at school or by their families, which can change their relationship with their bodies. Teens are frequently influenced by their peers and family members, and they tend to adopt their views on what constitutes an acceptable body image. A person’s physical and emotional health can suffer as a result of a negative or distorted body image. It can lead to a variety of mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, OCD, and eating disorders. A poor self-image can lead to frequent mood swings, social isolation, and dysfunctional relationships. Fear of rejection and non-acceptance due to a person’s physical appearance... Read more

Kids’ Ability To Manage Emotion Is Linked to Their Parents

It is estimated that 7% of the child population suffers from developmental language disorder Promoting spaces to work on emotional development can facilitate children's expressiveness and empathyProblems when talking, communicating and expressing feelings are common among children and adolescents, in particular at an early age. These difficulties increase in the case of those diagnosed with developmental language disorder, which affects approximately 7% of the child population. A recent study published in the open-access journal Frontiers in Psychology, by researchers from the Cognition and Language Research Group (GRECIL), included in the eHealth Center at the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) and the University of Barcelona (UB), has analysed the existence of differences in emotional regulation in children and adolescents who have been diagnosed with specific language impairment / developmental language disorder (SLI/DLD). "There are still few studies that assess the emotional and social dimension of the child and adolescent population with... Read more

How can you help your child blossom socially?

Following the arrival of the Omricon variant , there has been a rising concern surrounding the potential return to remote learning, yet educators have warned us about this shaky emotional and social situation for Israeli students. There is no doubt that now, facing a great deal of uncertainty, many parents are quite concerned about the social and emotional state of their children. It is important to remember that one’s socio-emotional state includes many individual, interpersonal and group skills with the help of which the child is able to manage emotions and cooperate with friends. This ability begins to develop as early as infancy and plays a significant role throughout life from early childhood through adulthood. Socio-emotional ability is manifested in making connections with friends; understanding, regulating and expressing emotions; developing academic skills and motivation for learning; developing relationships and dating; finding and retaining work and more. When there are problems... Read more

What Is Developmental Psychology?

Developmental psychology is the study of how humans grow, change, and adapt across the course of their lives. Developmental psychologists research the stages of physical, emotional, social, and intellectual development from the prenatal stage to infancy, childhood, adolescence, and adulthood. Learn more about developmental psychology, including the definition, types, life stages, and how to seek treatment when necessary. According to the American Psychological Association (APA), developmental psychology is a branch of psychology that focuses on how human beings grow, change, adapt, and mature across various life stages.1 In each of the life stages of developmental psychology, people generally meet certain physical, emotional, and social milestones.2 These are the major life stages, according to developmental psychologists: Prenatal development: Developmental psychologists are interested in diagnoses, such as Down syndrome, that might be noticed during the prenatal (before birth) stage. They also investigate how maternal behaviors (behaviors of the pregnant parent), such as... Read more

The One Thing You Need for Great Conversations With Kids

"I'm so exhausted, so drained," so many parents have told me recently—especially those with kids under 5, or those working or caring for aging parents. "How can I raise my kids well, and help them thrive, when I'm far from thriving myself? How can I have great conversations with them, when there's so much whining, anxiety, boredom, and stress?" I understand—as a speech pathologist and university lecturer, and also as the mom of two kids, ages 10 and 5, living through yet another Northeast pandemic winter. Recently, as a family, we've had to undergo two separate COVID quarantines. Clearly, our society isn't set up for these kinds of arrangements. Soon, both kids and parents can get grumpy, leaving at least some parents to go outside and scream. The idea of having meaningful talks or answering yet another "why" question may seem impossible. Why Great Conversations With Kids Matter—Especially Now But... Read more

What Social-Emotional Development Looks Like

Many parents have heard the term “social-emotional development,” but what does it mean in the real world? Put simply, social-emotional development refers to children’s ability to “experience, manage and express” their feelings, build relationships and actively explore their environment, according to a 2005 report from the nonprofit Zero to Three. Managing one’s behavior, expressing emotions appropriately and developing empathy are all part of the journey. It’s “understanding how our bodies and minds feel and think in relationship to the world around us,” says Mary Hadley, a speech-language pathologist in Texas who has spent 15 years helping adults and children communicate. Children record many physical and mental milestones, especially in their first few years of life. Likewise, social-emotional skills grow throughout childhood and adolescence – also with milestones – and can be just as important. Dr. Toya Roberson-Moore, a child and adolescent psychiatrist, says that social-emotional development relates to brain health,... Read more

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