To help your child become an autonomous and resilient learner:
Encourage her to spend more time chatting in person and less time chatting online.
Teens today socialize very differently than their parents did. Smart phones and social media have transformed the way in which teens communicate with their friends. Instead of hanging-out together after school and chatting with their friends on the phone, they send text messages and have group chats on platforms like Instagram and Skype.
In her book The Big Disconnect: Protecting Childhood and Family Relationships in the Digital Age, Dr. Catherine Steiner-Adair explains how over-using these types of communication technologies erodes our ability to formulate our thoughts and to express them orally. Studies have actually shown that teens who spend a lot of time communicating electronically have more difficulty expressing themselves orally and having meaningful conversations with their family and peers. On the other hand, teens who spend more time together away from technology – at camps or social activities, for example – converse more effectively.
With two weeks of vacation ahead, now is the perfect time to help your child develop better conversational skills. Consider banning technology during family gatherings and encouraging your child to get together with friends.