EARLY SOCIAL COMPETENCE as opposed to academic competence might be more important in predicting a child's later success both academically and professionally, according to a new study written up in both USA Today and The Washington Post. Social competence includes the abilities to make friends, to cooperate, to share, to listen to others, and more. The longitudinal, 20-year study involved 800 children.
TV: AN IMPEDIMENT TO SOCIAL SKILLS -- that according to another study showing that more TV at 29 months correlates to a higher likelihood of being bullied in sixth grade. The supposed reason? More screen time leaves less time for family interaction which means less development of social skills. Plus evidently TV-viewers make less eye contact. Read more.
DIFFERENTIATION: NOT BACKING DOWN. Remember the firestorm Jim Delisle touched off earlier this year with his Education Week article titled "Differentiation Doesn't Work"? It generated a huge readership and a barrage of responses. Delisle describes the type of responses he received -- mostly "not especially complimentary" -- but he reiterates his stand in a piece at the site of SENG. (He does allow, however, that "differentiation can work if we are honest enough to admit that we need to reconfigure our classrooms so that the range of student abilities is manageable." Read more.
NEUROSCIENCE AND PERSONALIZED EDUCATION. That's the topic of an article at DistrictAministration.com. Now, in there's anything we believe will help twice-exceptional students succeed (other than actually being identified as 2e), it's probably an educational setting that accommodates an individual student's strengths and weaknesses. To the extent neuroscience can foster that, we're all in. Some of the neuroscience-based enhancements covered in the article are the use of multi-sensory, hands-on learning; early identification of potential problem areas; relaxation and imagery; and the growth mindset. Find the article.
FOLLOW-UP: MEDICAL CHILD ABUSE. On July 14, we pointed here to an essay in The New York Times titled "The New Child Abuse Panic," which focused on that touchy area when a child's medical problems are uncertain and when parents are perceived by medical professionals as interfering with care -- to the point where some parents have lost custody of the child patient. The Times has published online seven letters in which, according to Times editors, "parents and doctors discuss when zealously seeking care crosses the line into abuse." Find the letters.