Child Development Resource: New Science About AdolescenceDecember 12, 2014
Last week I caught this fascinating piece on NPR’s Here and Now with Professor Larry Steinberg of Temple University. Steinberg’s latest book is titled “Age of Opportunity: Lessons from the New Science of Adolescence”, and it highlights all sorts of new findings coming out of research regarding adolescent brain development. It is also closely aligned with what I wrote about in a blog last month regarding the need for pre-teens to engage in healthy risk taking.
Below are two of my favorite excerpts from Steinberg’s interview:
Yet again, research is backing up what we at summer camp have known for quite some time. Adoscelent brains crave risk taking, and that by presenting them with healthy options like rock climbing, team sports, and simply being away from home for extended periods of time, we provide them with an optimal learning environment that will shape their behaviors for a lifetime. Additionally, now more than ever, children need ample opportunities to acquire non-cognitive skills (also known as 21st century skills) such as grit, independence and critical problem solving, as they will be crucial for their success in both the academic and business world.
Below is Steinberg’s entire 15 minute interview, which I hope you find as fascinating as I did. After listening to it I’d love to know your thoughts. Do you agree with his findings, including that children are starting puberty earlier than they did a generation ago? Is adolescence lasting longer, and if so, why? Please join me in the discussion, especially if you have children in this age group.