Best of the Web: Raising Happy Kids in the Digital Age, Why Kids should Talk Back, and Parenting with MND

Our selection of thought-provoking and useful articles from around the web on educating and raising children.

(Caroline Knorr, The Washington Post)

We are all grappling with the impact – and pervasiveness – of digital technology in our lives. As this article notes, the wellbeing of our kids seems to be in free-fall. But raising happy children isn’t impossible, says the author. Many generations have done so with much greater threats than FOMO – Fear of Missing Out. The rules just need to be rewritten in the digital age. One rule: go outside.

Encourage your kids to talk back – and set them up for life

(Stuart Heritage, The Guardian)

There’s new research showing the benefit of allowing children to have discussions with adults. It shows what we all know – kids do better when adults talk with them. The findings have come three decades too late for the author, who endured the ‘speak when spoken to’ approach that he has struggled to shake off. It manifests itself in hesitancy around authority figures, deferring to their bad ideas. Things will be different for his three-year-old.

One woman’s story of parenting with motor neurone disease

(Roisin McCann and Carol Rääbus, ABC Life)

What happens to a family when a parent is diagnosed with a devastating condition, such as Motor Neurone Disease? This is a powerful account of Cath Baker and her family of husband Grant and daughters Georgia, Meg and Scarlet, and how they have stepped up to help. Scarlet, 9, never wears earphones at home, in case her mother calls for her.

Children as young as eight feel the pressure for the ‘perfect’ body

(Aisha Dow, The Age)

Researchers from the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute have found that children as young as eight are vulnerable to poor body image, particularly when they start their physical development early. The study examined hormones and the attitudes of ‘pre-tweens’, looking at the link between body dissatisfaction and the early stage of puberty,  called adrenarche.

 

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