Monday, January 9, 2017

Patricia Polacco, Mental Health, Screen Time, and More

AUTHOR PATRICIA POLACCO has written books that have been featured in the column "Bob Seney On Books" in 2e Newsletter, notably Thank You, Mr. Falker and Bully. Polacco, who has dyslexia and didn't learn to read until age 14, was profiled last week in the Pittsburg Post-Gazette. If you're a fan, check it out.

FEAR, ANXIETY: NEUROLOGICALLY DIFFERENT. Research discussed at the site of the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation describes the differences between fear and anxiety in terms of circuitry in the brain. Hypothesizing that the two emotions are controlled by different circuits, the researches state that this understanding can lead to better treatments. Find the article.

MENTAL HEALTH AT SCHOOL. A writer who is a therapist describes in the Washington Post how schools can better support the 20 percent of students who struggle with issues such as anxiety, depression, and ADHD. Emphasizing a team approach, the writer suggests three main things to improve the daily mental health of students: creating a culture of caring; using morning meetings to connect; and designating "calming corners." Read more.

MEDIA ADDICTION. An Australian writer in The Huffington Post takes on the topic of "addiction" to media, noting that while connectedness can be good for a child, the dopamine released by seeing a "like" can have a downside. The writer provides some guidelines for parents on controlling and monitoring screen time. Find the article. Separately, an M.D. writing in Psychology Today says that children with autism are vulnerable to negative effects from screen time, including hyperarousal and dysregulation as well as "technology addiction." Find the article.

LANDMARK COLLEGE has released two communiques, one from the college proper and the other from its Institute for Research and training. The first provides information that might be of interest to parents and students considering Landmark for college; find it. The second might be of interest for professional development opportunities for those engaged in educating bright young people who learn differently; find it.

GIFTED AND DISTRACTIBLE. Julie Skolnik's most recent newsletter edition is out, with news about a screening of "2e: Twice Exceptional" the movie and this summer's Camp Summit East. Also included: a listing of events in the Washington, D.C., area plus pointers to resources. Find the newsletter.

DEPRESSION, ANXIETY: There's an app for those? Science Daily reports on a suite of 13 mini-apps called IntelliCare which apparently significantly reduced depression and anxiety in study participants, who used the apps on their smartphones up to four times a day. The reductions of 50 percent in anxiety and depression are comparable to results expected in clinical practice using psychotherapy or with antidepressant medication, says the write-up. Find out more.

ONLINE EVENT. The Brain and Behavior Research Foundation has scheduled a webinar for January 10 on bipolar disorder. Part of the organization's "Meet the Scientist Series," this webinar is to be presented by Fritz Hen, M.D. and Ph.D. Find out more.

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