With the impending start of school in
Benicia next Wednesday, parents are challenged to begin transitioning kids
from the summer mentality back to the structured focus on learning.
A child’s brain is constantly undergoing change, especially during the teenage years. According to Sandra Bond Chapman, Ph.D, the teen brain is in a vulnerable state. It is primed to fall into addiction, delve deeply into depression and seek out risky situations. However, the teen years are also a prime time for developing long-term, necessary strategic thinking skills, the foundation for advanced reasoning that should continue to be refined in complexity and maturity throughout adulthood.
Chapman explains that elevating brainpower during this impressionable life stage of adolescents is imperative to promoting independent life success. Stating that by following a few easy tips, you can inspire the best and brightest brain performance out of your teen:
- Teach your teen to conceive many unique interpretations of movies, books, political discussions, unsettling school or peer issues, or works of art.
- Encourage your youth to be a problem finder and solution setter for issues that arise daily and discuss how academic content supports this expertise.
- Ask your teenager to give you a “message” from a book or movie or hurtful experience rather than a long-winded retell without reflection.
- Have your adolescent interpret the lyrics of their favorite song from positive and negative perspectives and do the same for your song with them.
- Watch their favorite TV show with them and share different take-home messages for the different characters.
- Push for a multitude of answers to a question or problem versus seeking the “right” answer.