What you need to know about 13 Reasons Why

If you have teenagers — or even if you don’t — you’ve probably heard about the Netflix show 13 Reasons Why.

It is one of the most talked about television shows on social media ever…

Generating 3.5 million social volume impressions in its first week of release alone.

And while the show has resonated with audiences, and been very positively received by critics, it has been heavily criticised by mental health and youth organisations around the world.

The show is based on the best-selling novel by Jay Asher, and depicts the suicide of 16-year-old Hannah, who creates a series of audiotapes addressing the 13 reasons why she committed suicide.

It ends with an incredibly graphic and distressing depiction of the act itself.

And parents, educators and critics around the world are asking the question:

Is this show dangerous?

Read more…

Why We Need Empathy, and How We Teach it to Children

There is an increasing dialogue in social organisations — in schools, workplaces, court rooms, governments — on the importance of empathy.

Empathy is what sets us apart from machines and even from many other animals.

It’s what enables us to relate to other people and their experiences…

It’s what enables us to understand them.

And it’s what makes us compassionate.

So it’s little wonder why it’s so integral to the social experience of schooling and childhood.

But empathy is not innate — it’s learnt.

And like most things, it’s best learnt during childhood.

And the best teachers are adults.

Read more…

How Can We Engage Our Students in the Classroom? Part 1.

There is an epidemic of disengagement in Australian classrooms.

And our students’ education is suffering as a result.

Research from the Grattan Institute has shown that around 40 per cent of school students are regularly unproductive, bored, or struggling to keep up with the curriculum. 

This ‘passive disengagement’ can result in students being up to two years behind their engaged peers in the academic setting.

But who or what is to blame?

Read more…

‘Happiness Lessons’ to be Introduced into UK Schools

In great news for British students and their families, the UK Department of Education will be investing over 2 million dollars in mental health support over the next few years.

This comes as a response to what has been called a ‘youth mental health epidemic’…

With around 10 per cent of UK students suffering from a diagnosable mental health condition.

Many students suffer from symptoms of anxiety and depression directly as a result of the extreme academic pressures they face in schooling.

So it’s a proactive and thoroughly appropriate response to tackle these issues within the school framework.

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Mindfulness for Kids — at Home and at School

There is no denying — or avoiding — the fact that children, and even very young children, are suffering from more anxiety than any generation before them.

This increase has been heavily documented in university research papers, psychology studies, and even noted by education professionals…

Up to 55 per cent of teachers in the UK have reported a dramatic rise in anxiety levels in their students in the last few years, and in Australia, the figures are similar. 

Read more…

Why Australian Students May Be Falling Behind, and Private Tutoring is Booming

According to a recent article in The Sydney Morning Herald, the Australian education is failing our kids.

While the school curriculum is becoming increasingly academically rigorous, more and more students are falling behind…

And the result is an increase in private tutoring for students around the country.

Health educator and GP Dr Annemarie Christie attributes these findings to a number of factors.

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Educational Needs: What Your Child Should be Getting Out of Their Schooling

There’s little question as to how and why teachers are such important and influential figures in our children’s lives.

Not only are they imparting knowledge and skill, they are also having a huge impact on their student’s psychological and emotional development.

And the best teachers can navigate all of your child’s education needs while keeping them motivated and engaged with school life and the study materials.

A recent article in The Conversation has identified what exactly our children’s Educational Needs are, and what we need to look for to ensure they are being met.

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Starting the New School Year on the Right Foot

Summer holidays have been and gone, and the beginning of the new school year is upon us.

And the transition from long days and late bed times back to a rigid routine can be a bit of a shock to the system.

But with some effort put into how you and your children will approach the new school year, you can make the change as smooth as possible and help your child get the most out of their schooling.

So with some reflections from our blog posts from over the years, here are some of our top tips for making 2017 your child’s best academic year yet.

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Some Parental “Don’ts” for the First Day of School

Next week will be the first day of school for thousands of new students.

And while the day and the lead up can be scary for the children, it’s often even scarier for the parents!

Worrying about how they’ll handle the new environment, if they’ll make friends, if their teacher will like them and a myriad of other variables can be anxiety inducing for any mum or dad.

But Julia Alexander of The Huffington Post has offered a few practical and helpful tips to try to make the transition a lot easier for you, which will help to make it easier for them.

Read more…

The Side-Effects of Teenage Sleepiness

We all know what a bad night sleep can do to our mood and ability to function throughout the day.

But for working adults, we’re generally forced to self-motivate and get on with things, often with the help of caffeine.

For teenagers, on the other hand, sleepiness can have more ongoingly detrimental consequences at school.

Read more…

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