Welcome to the inaugural issue of Youth Development Today. In this issue: How schools can build resilience, effective practices in youth mentoring, adolescent brain development, and Social and Emotional Learning.
This recent webinar (December 2016) on adolescent brain development highlights key research in this area and its potential impact on schools, teaching practices, student learning, and education policy.
There is a powerful message hidden in this television ad. It is an important reminder of how often individual lived experiences of young people go unnoticed. When positive relationships and the supports they can provide are absent, the results can be tragic.
According to this Canadian research study, body image challenges lead adolescent girls to withdraw from extracurricular sports activities. Girls’ negative emotions around body image are connected to “socialization from parents and family, teachers, coaches, and peers; comparisons to others who are perceived to be better at sports and/or had better appearances; self-comparison to ideals promoted in media that tend to be unrealistic to achieve; and, especially, the influence of social media comments and comparative images posted on Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram.”
Meaningful assessment of student progress and development must include academic measures as well as measures of social-emotional development. Current assessment and student comment systems prioritize academic performance and “rarely address the behaviors most worth talking about, i.e., those best aligned with our ultimate goal of educating the future citizens of our society.”
Created by the New Zealand Youth Mentoring Network, this comprehensive guide was designed to help a wide variety of youth programs deliver safe and effective mentoring services for youth. It includes recommendations for program development, management, and evaluation.
This report by the US-based Centre for Promise explores barriers to wellness faced by young people of colour in five major American cities (Boston, Chicago, Denver, Philadelphia, and St. Paul). University-based researchers worked with youth development organizations to engage young people as partners and leaders in the design and implementation of the project.
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.