According to a recent study by Johns Hopkins researchers, the numbers of teenage girls in the U.S. experiencing major depressive episodes has been climbing. They suggest that the ongoing presence of social media in their lives may be contributing to the problem: “Today’s constant online connections — via texting, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat, — can exacerbate that harsh focus on looks and other judgments from peers …”
The success of young people is closely connected to their social and emotional development. This recording captures several youth voices as they discuss their views on the role that social, emotional, and academic skills can play in their lives and how schools can support their development.
In order to support the well-being and positive development of their students, teachers should place strong emphasis on their own well-being and attend to activities and mindsets that help them thrive.
Research suggests that young people do not need praise to be successful. They do, however, benefit from feedback that focuses on their effort. Focusing on effort encourages youth to see that working towards a goal can be its own reward.
From the Harvard Graduate School of Education: “In a time of division and uncertainty for our country, many of us — teachers, school leaders, parents — are asking, “What can we do?” How can we reject discrimination and protect children who feel targeted for their religion, ethnicity, gender, or even political beliefs? How can we welcome diverse perspectives and hard conversations?”
Recess plays an important role in healthy child development. Research suggests that it helps with social, academic, emotional, and physical development. Recess also provides children and youth with opportunities to practice important skills, such as self-regulation, conflict resolution, and cooperation.
However, there are currently no validated assessment tools to measure skill development and the impact of recess/play on student development. Plans are under way to change that.
These lists of resources on — among others — resilience, grit, the growth mindset, and managing stress, have been designed to assist educators and parents in creating environments and supports that help young people thrive in school and other aspects of their lives.
Youth Development Today is a monthly newsletter focused on youth well-being and student success. Each issue features 5 to 10 current resources on youth development, and offers a healthy mix of academic research, practice-based insights, and grey literature.