To help your child become an autonomous and resilient learner:
Ensure that she makes time for aerobic activity every day.
Throughout the month of May, I will be providing tips based on the book U Thrive: How to Succeed in College (and Life). It was written by Dan Lerner and Dr. Alan Schlechter, who team-teach New York University’s most popular elective class, called “The Science of Happiness.” The book is a fun and comprehensive guide to surviving and thriving in college and beyond. However, it is also full of research-based tips for building positive lifelong habits that can help people of all ages flourish in school, at work and in life.
Chapter 10 of the book is dedicated to the benefits of exercise on the adolescent brain. Scientific studies have demonstrated that exercise – and especially aerobic exercise – improves memory retention and reduces stress. It also causes the brain to secret proteins that interact with the prefrontal cortex, which is responsible for complex cognitive behaviour, personality expression, planning, decision-making, and moderating social behaviour.
So, if you want to help your child thrive in school, be sure she engages in some form of aerobic activity every day, for at least 30 minutes. Whether it be walking, dancing, cycling, skateboarding or playing basketball, just get moving!