Thursday, September 01, 2011

Lĭt / uh / ruh / sē Äw / fĭs

Executive Function and how can you help your kids develop it?

Executive functions are brain-based cognitive skills that aid critical thinking and self regulation. They help with self-directive, “what to do” skills such as starting tasks, paying attention, persevering, and remembering. Also help with “how to” skills such as planning, organizing, shifting strategies, and managing time. Executive functions also help people manage their perceptions, thoughts, actions, and social interactions.

Ready for School? Executive Function = Success
Huffington Post: 8.30.2011 by Susan Kaiser Greenland

The term "Executive Function" may sound more relevant to business school than elementary school, yet it's crucial to your child's social and emotional development. Executive Function is a family of attention-related processes involved in planning and carrying out goal directed behavior. It predicts school readiness better than IQ scores and is a reliable forecaster of math and reading aptitudes. Because the regions of the brain associated with Executive Function are involved in the regulation of emotions and behavior, it's no surprise that there's good science that links Executive Function to empathy, pro-social behavior, emotional regulation, delayed gratification, and peer relationships. There's even a recent research finding that links preschool-aged children's capacities to delay gratification with higher SAT scores in high-school.

So what is Executive Function and how can you help your kids develop it? In brief, core skills associated with Executive Function are skills that children use all the time at play, at home, and in school. They require monitoring and shifting their attention, remembering information, and self-regulating. A good example of three of these skills is found in "Simon Says," a classic children's game that is fun to play and develops Executive Function. In "Simon Says," children remember the rules of the game (follow a command only when they hear the phrase 'Simon Says'); self-regulate by not automatically responding to the command (analyze it before responding); shift attention (between the command and the rules of the game to figure out how to respond); and self-regulate again (by responding only if the command included the phrase 'Simon Says'). READ MORE !

Check It Out @ Burbank Public Library

The secret of play:
how to raise smart, healthy, caring kids from birth to age 12
Ann Pleshette Murphy
FAO Schwarz, 2008

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