This is your child’s brain on reading

When parents read to their children the difference shows in children’s behavior and academic performance. And according to a new study, the difference also shows in their brain activity.

Researchers looked at children ages 3 to 5 who underwent brain scans called functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) while listening to a pre-recorded story. The parents answered questions about how much they read to, and communicated with, their children.

Parents Reading to Preschool Children Improves Behavior & Academic Performance

The researchers saw that, when the young children were being told a story, a number of regions in the left part of the brain became active. These are the areas involved in understanding the meaning of words and concepts and also in memory. These same brain regions have been found to be active when older children listen to stories or read.

This study shows that the development of this area starts at a very young age, said Tzipi Horowitz-Kraus, program director of the Reading and Literacy Discovery Center at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. Horowitz-Kraus is one of the authors of the study, which was led by Dr. John S. Hutton, pediatrician at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. It was published on Monday in the journal Pediatrics. …View the entire CNN article

The importance of children at play

In the early stages of life, peer play is an important factor in the developmental growth of a child. It is during play and children’s interactions with peers when many essential and vital skills are learned, from social connections to emotional, language, and cognitive abilities.

The importance of children at play

Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Miami (UM) College of Arts & Sciences Dr. Rebecca J. Bulotsky-Shearer is fully aware of how interactive play is necessary for a child’s growth; her research centers on social and emotional development in children – especially children living in poverty or adverse life circumstances. …View the entire article

Raising a Future King the Montessori Way

Sharpen your pencils – Prince George is off to school!

Today, the 2-year-old – sporting a baby blue backpack – had his first day at Westacre Montessori School, near his family’s home, Amner Hall, in Norfolk, England. And luckily for the rest of us, the whole thing was captured adorably by his mom, Princess Kate.

Raising a Future King the Montessori Way
Prince George
© The Duchess of Cambridge

Prince William and Kate chose to enroll their son in a school that practices the famous Montessori method. Founded by Italian physician and teacher Maria Montessori, the distinctive educational approach is known for encouraging creative thinking, personalized learning and embracing individuality.

Below, just a few of the key advantages the future king stands to gain from his Montessori education.

  1. He’ll be ready to mingle with all sorts of people.

  2. He’ll be a deep thinker.

  3. He’ll have the freedom to be himself.

  4. He’ll learn to admit when he’s made mistakes.

  5. He’ll learn the importance of community.

Read the entire article here.

Growth Mindset

Carol Dweck Revisits the ‘Growth Mindset’

by Carol Dweck

For many years, I secretly worked on my research. I say “secretly” because, once upon a time, researchers simply published their research in professional journals—and there it stayed.

However, my colleagues and I learned things we thought people needed to know. We found that students’ mindsets—how they perceive their abilities—played a key role in their motivation and achievement, and we found that if we changed students’ mindsets, we could boost their achievement. More precisely, students who believed their intelligence could be developed (a growth mindset) outperformed those who believed their intelligence was fixed (a fixed mindset). And when students learned through a structured program that they could “grow their brains” and increase their intellectual abilities, they did better. Finally, we found that having children focus on the process that leads to learning (like hard work or trying new strategies) could foster a growth mindset and its benefits.

So a few years back, I published my book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success to share these discoveries with educators. And many educators have applied the mindset principles in spectacular ways with tremendously gratifying results. …Continue reading the entire article from Education Week.

Growth Mindset by Carol Dweck

Carol Dweck is the Lewis and Virginia Eaton professor of psychology at Stanford University and the author of Mindset: The New Psychology of Success (Ballantine Books).

Don’t Write Off Cursive

Teaching kids how to write in script is no longer a priority in American schools, but it should be.

Don't Write Off Cursive

Cursive is an art. It’s woven into the very fabric of the United States constitution. Yet, everywhere we look, it’s literally being written out of existence. Like a sandcastle built at the edge of the sea, with each crashing wave, the strokes of cursive are slowly fading away.

Once at the very heart of public school education, cursive is aggressively being replaced by computer classes. As of today, 45 states have adopted the Common Core State Standards for English, which omits cursive from required curricula in schools today.

Instead of learning the basics of cursive handwriting, children are increasingly being introduced to the nuances of the keyboard. There’s absolutely no denying the importance that computers play in our world. You’re reading this in print, on a computer, tablet, or mobile device. …Visit site for more