April Book Picks...
Research shows that teenagers' brains are not fully insulated, which means that signals move slowly, it also explains why teenagers can be especially susceptible to addictions, including drugs, alcohol, smoking and smartphones. The author, a neuroscientist, explains how an adult is much more likely to control impulses or weigh different factors in decisions, where a teenager may not actually have full on-line, in-the-moment capacity. And that's why we see risky behavior, like impulsively sharing a nude photo that might come their way. Do we blame an 8th grader for passing along the inappropriate photo? Or do we, as parents, need to better understand their brain? More directly: By giving tweens and teens (unmonitored) smartphones, are we setting them up to fail? Are we asking too much of a brain that simply isn't ready to restrain itself from the impulse to "forward," or "share," or say something online that can get them in trouble?
The wonderful people at Wait Until 8th shared this powerful and truly helpful piece about how good kids get into big trouble with smartphones in their pockets.
Book my 12-Year-Old is Reading:
"Jeremy Fink and the Meaning of Life" by Wendy Mass. My 6th-grader (who is not a voracious reader) likes Wendy Mass. She'll only read on a Kindle Paperwhite at night before bed. I have loads of books for her in the house but she, for whatever strange reason, will only lose herself in a Kindle. So be it. I'll take what I can get! 😂
(I don't mind her using her Kindle right before bed because, unlike a Kindle Fire Tablet or iPad, the lighting is entirely different. I talk more about that here, if you're curious.)
QUOTE that blew my mind this month:
"Imagine that your spouse suddenly begins to act strangely: won’t look you in the eye, rejects physical contact, speaks to you irritably in monosyllables, shuns your approaches, and avoids your company. Then imagine that you go to your friends for advice. Would they say to you, “Have you tried a time-out? Have you imposed limits and made clear what your expectations are?” It would be obvious to everyone that you’re dealing not with a behavior problem but a relationship problem." -- by child development Ph.D. Gordon Neufeld.