Summary of “Communal living with kids”

Many cohousing kids talked about learning to play sports that their parents didn’t know anything about from various members of the community, learning to cook dishes that their own parents didn’t cook, and even getting spiritual and emotional counsel from people other than their parents when going through a challenging time.
Many cohousing kids talked about the power of being exposed to a wide range of professions through the adults in their communities.
Like Durrett, most cohousing kids have been coloring under a table or building Legos in proximity to more meetings than they could possibly count.
While most so-called typical families face food insecurity, strains on their time or energy, sickness, and any number of other challenges within the four walls of their own private homes, cohousing kids are raised in an environment where many of these things are treated as collective problems and possibilities for growth.
Helen Thomson, who grew up in Heartwood Cohousing near Durango, Colorado, from the age of 5 until she left for the University of Montana, explains: “I think that all of us who grew up in Heartwood are much better at communicating and working together than many other kids our age.”
Cohousing kids often have freedom to roam between houses and in the shared outdoor spaces, even as little kids.
Many of the kids who grew up in cohousing attest to having a different way of moving through the world than most people.
For all its potential flaws, almost all of the young adults I interviewed said that, given the chance, they would raise their own kids in cohousing.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Why P.E. Fails at Solving Problems Such as Obesity”

The results of Packham’s paper on the Fitness Now program support the basic takeaway that the design of P.E. courses is what’s most consequential, and they hint at two interconnected factors that experts suggest tend to undermine the impact of such curricula.
For one, P.E. programs often rely on a superficial notion of gym class-conceiving of physical activity as little more than a timed run around the track, for example, or a game of kickball-and this results in worse offerings.
Despite greater recognition of the academic benefits of physical activities-including guidelines from agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stressing that kids should get at least an hour of such activities a day-schools began to deprioritize P.E. about two decades ago, and the cuts have persisted in many cases, suggests Kohl.
An immense body of research demonstrates the positive benefits of increased recess time, which schools started to cut after No Child Left Behind was signed into law, because of the policy’s emphasis on academic subjects such as reading and math.
Justin Cahill, a veteran P.E. educator who’s taught at an Atlanta-area private school for the past decade or so, stresses that it’s the typical application of physical education rather than the fundamental concept that results in bad outcomes.
Until the past few years, P.E. classes tended to focus on kids’ acquisition of skills, such as dribbling a ball, and the fulfillment of universal benchmarks, such as the ability to run around a track three times within some specific amount of time.
Echoing the findings outlined in Kohl’s book, he says that positive results are contingent on a multifaceted and holistic design-what he defines as programs that inspire children to exercise without realizing they’re exercising, that simply ensure they’re constantly moving, during recess, frequent “Brain breaks” to get out “The sillies,” morning jogs, and, yes, regular P.E. class.
Positive results are also contingent on experienced, empathetic P.E. teachers-those who know to modify a curriculum to meet a certain student’s needs, and to give kudos to that child who can’t run around the track.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Anxiety and burnout: I work with kids. Here’s why they’re consumed with worry.”

I’d heard from parents, teachers, and friends with children that kids today live increasingly busy and stressful lives compared to previous generations.
The kids often used workplace lingo to describe their lives.
Kids today live with the baggage of their parents’ economic anxiety I’ve talked about these observations with friends who work with kids, parents, and other students when our church goes to summer camp.
Kids today have to constantly consider the perils of work and career with enough specificity to worry about it.
At the same time that they stress about the future that’s so very far off, they live with technology that keeps that anxiety consistently in the front of their minds.
While many of us who work with kids don’t want to name the likelihood that the generation behind us will do even worse than us, it’s hard not to see that we communicate it to them regardless.
These kids aren’t even being told that the point of all the work and the stress is a better life – they’re being told it’s necessary just to survive.
These kids live with what philosopher Pascal Bruckner calls “Tension without intention.” They’re constantly stressed, and they’re growing aware that there’s no payoff for it all.

The orginal article.

Summary of “School lockdowns: How many American children have hidden from gun violence?”

More than 4.1 million students endured at least one lockdown in the 2017-2018 school year alone, according to a first-of-its-kind analysis by The Washington Post that included a review of 20,000 news stories and data from school districts in 31 of the country’s largest cities.
The total figure is likely much higher because many school districts – including in Detroit and Chicago – do not track them and hundreds never make the news, particularly when they happen at urban schools attended primarily by children of color.
Still, on a typical day last school year, at least 16 campuses locked down, with nine related to gun violence or the threat of it.
School systems in every state and the District had several last school year, The Post’s analysis found, and they happened in buildings with as few as four students and as many as 5,000.
Last school year, the system Czajkowski oversees, Sweetwater Union High School District, dealt with 71 student threats, he said, but only seven times did schools lock down, and five of those were prompted by off-campus danger, such as a burglary or gunfire.
In the month after dozens of people were slaughtered at a Las Vegas country music festival on Oct. 1, 2017, the number of lockdowns in Nevada’s Clark County School District spiked 42 percent to a total of 37, the highest count during the entire school year.
Last school year, there were 136 lockdowns of varying degrees across the 110 schools in the Columbus district, one of the highest ratios among large-city systems that The Post reviewed.
A year of carnage in American schools In April, the country will mark the 20th anniversary of the massacre at Columbine High, and that day will arrive in the aftermath of the worst year of school shootings in modern American history.

The orginal article.

Summary of “If You’re Scared Of Math, Your Kids Might Be Too”

If You’re Scared Of Math, Your Kids Might Be Too A new study shows that creating an environment in which math is part of everyday life, can help kids do better in the subject.
One reason for a kid’s math anxiety? How their parents feel about the subject.
“A parent might say, ‘oh I’m not a math person, it’s okay if you’re not good at math either,'” Sian Beilock, cognitive scientist and President of Barnard College, says.
Families did this for a total of three years – while kids grew from first to third grade – because this is when kids tend to solidify their fear of math.
After a year of reading these stories, parents felt more confident in their children’s math potential and valued the importance of math skills more.
Now, after three years, when those students were tested on their math ability, they did just as well as the kids whose parents felt confident about math.
Using the app to read bedtime stories didn’t get rid of math anxiety – it was a way for families to normalize math at home and foster a relaxed dialogue around the subject.
Creating an environment in which math is part of everyday life won’t transform kids into overnight math sensations, but perhaps it can help kids realize math is a subject for curiosity, discussion and growth.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Teaching kids to code: I’m a developer and I think it doesn’t actually teach important skills.”

On a recent late-night formula run, I passed by a large display of books about teaching children to code.
These books are part of a flood of resources-summer coding camps, after-school code clubs, apps designed to teach kindergarteners the rudiments of JavaScript-aimed at equipping children with future-proof skills.
If learning to code is good, then learning earlier is better.
While these products may teach kids specific coding languages, they actually have very little to do with the work of creating software.
The description in one popular book says starting coding early is “Essential to prepare kids for the future.” This gives the impression that not teaching kids to code is somehow equivalent to not teaching them to read. That is, of course, ridiculous.
Coding books for kids present coding as a set of problems with “Correct” solutions.
Early in my career, I wrote some code to configure and run a group of remote servers.
Well-designed code feels good to work with, and ugly code will make developers involuntarily cringe.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Timeouts are a dated and ineffective parenting strategy. So what’s a good alternative?”

Supernanny may have left our screens, but many parents still rely on timeouts when their kids misbehave.
Parenting experts have criticized the timeout technique in recent years, saying that it might neglect a child’s emotional needs.
“Children experience feelings of isolation and abandonment when placed in time out,” says Bonnie Compton, a child and adolescent therapist, parenting coach and author of “Mothering With Courage,” in an email.
So what’s the alternative? Many parenting experts advocate “Time-in” as a healthier behavior strategy.
To help a child grasp why their behavior is not appropriate, Sabri recommends going to the child’s eye level, speaking in a calm, soft voice, explaining what the child is doing and why they shouldn’t do it, and suggesting an acceptable alternative.
If timeouts are used as a way to give the child a calmer environment, Haas emphasizes that the parent should remain with the child at all times, and maintain a calm, loving demeanor to help them calm down.
“The parent can then calmly explain why they thought the child’s behavior was inappropriate or dangerous. This is an opportunity for both the parent and child to better understand each other and learn from each other – an opportunity which is missed if the parent chooses to isolate themselves from their child.”
Follow On Parenting on Facebook for more essays, news and updates.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The ultimate guide to gifting STEM toys: tons of ideas for little builders – TechCrunch”

The holiday season is here again, touting all sorts of kids’ toys that pledge to pack ‘STEM smarts’ in the box, not just the usual battery-based fun.
In recent years, long time toymakers and a flurry of new market entrants have piggybacked on the popularity of smartphones and apps, building connected toys for even very young kids that seek to tap into a wider ‘learn to code’ movement which itself feeds off worries about the future employability of those lacking techie skills.
Whatever STEM toy you buy there’s a high chance it won’t survive the fickle attention spans of kids at rest and play.
We certainly don’t suggest there are any shortcuts to turn kids into coders in the gift ideas presented here.
Your parental priorities might be more focused on making sure they develop into well rounded human beings – by playing with other kids and/or non-digital toys that help them get to know and understand the world around them, and encourage using more of their own imagination.
Like many STEM toys it requires a tablet or desktop computer to work its digital magicAge: 6+. Product: Computer Kit TouchPrice: $280Description: The latest version of Kano’s build-it-yourself Pi-powered kids’ computer.
Root uses spirographs as the medium for teaching STEM as kids get to code what the bot draws.
Age: 8+. Tech Will Save Us. Product: Range of coding, electronics and craft kitsPrice: From ~$30 up to $150Description: A delightful range of electronic toys and coding kits, hitting various age and price-points, and often making use of traditional craft materials.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Income Inequality Explains the Decline of Youth Sports”

Among richer families, youth sports participation is actually rising.
Read: What’s lost when only rich kids play sports.
“Kids’ sports has seen an explosion of travel-team culture, where rich parents are writing a $3,000 check to get their kids on super teams from two counties, or two states, away,” said Tom Farrey, the executive director of Aspen’s Sports & Society program.
As Chris Moore, the executive officer of the U.S. Youth Soccer Association, told The New York Times, “If you can’t make a travel team, some kids may say, ‘What’s the point?’ and quit playing altogether.”
In short, the American system of youth sports-serving the talented, and often rich, individual at the expense of the collective-has taken a metal bat to the values of participation and universal development.
Declining athletic participation is a prime example of how the choices even benevolent rich households make can hurt poorer families-especially their children.
As a general rule, rich parents in the United States don’t just spend more money on their kids; they spend a larger share of their income on their kids.
In his 2017 book, Dream Hoarders, the economist Richard Reeves wrote that economic mobility in the U.S. has been declining in the past few decades in part because of “Opportunity hoarding.” For example, rich parents may pull special levers to get their kids into hyper-select schools, or elite internships, or exclusive entry-level jobs.

The orginal article.

Summary of “There’s Worrying New Research About Kids’ Screen Time and Their Mental Health”

While spending seven or more hours a day on screens was not typical among the younger kids in the study, roughly 20% of 14- to 17-year-olds spent this amount of time on screens each day.
Along with the associations between screen time and diagnoses of depression and anxiety, the study found that young people who spent seven hours or more a day on screens were more easily distracted, less emotionally stable and had more problems finishing tasks and making friends compared to those who spent just an hour a day on screens.
Adolescents seemed to have more problems than younger kids as a result of heavy screen use.
“However, teens spend more time on their phones and on social media, and we know from other research that these activities are more strongly linked to low wellbeing than watching TV and videos, which is most of younger children’s screen time.”
She’s also found that kids who spend more time on screens tend to be less happy than kids who engage in non-screen activities like playing sports, reading traditional printed media or spending time socializing with friends face-to-face.
Twenge says her study shows “a clear and strong association” between more screen time and lower wellbeing.
“At the moment, the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines set specific time limits on screen time only for children [ages] five and younger,” she says.
Based on the 2011-2012 data, Przybylski’s study concluded that the AAP’s advice to limit the screen time of young kids was not warranted.

The orginal article.