Saturday, October 27, 2018

Former GPS speaker Christine Carter shares advice on Teen Independence

What helps and what hurts when parents aim to solve their teenager's problems. Here former GPS speaker Christine Carter highlights the work of another favorite GPS keynote Dr. Mike Riera as well as our Nov 14 GPS presenters (Self-Directed Child/The Science and Sense of Giving Your Kids More Confidence, Purpose and Control) Ned Johnson and Dr. William Stixrud. Don't miss this special program at noon and repeated at 7pm.  Details on this upcoming event at

How Independent Should Our Teenagers Be?

Years ago, an educator I respect a lot warned me that my teens would fire me as their "manager" if I didn't stop being so bossy.

I couldn’t imagine it. I thought that I’d always get to manage my children’s lives, at least while they were living under my roof. I should be promoted when my kids get older, I used to think, not fired.

But parents who are too controlling—those who don’t step down from their manager roles—breed rebellion. Many kids with micromanaging parents will politely agree to the limits their parents set with a “yes, sir” or “yes, ma’am” attitude, but then will break those rules the first chance they get. They do this not because they are bad kids, but because they need to regain a sense of control over their own lives.

Monday, October 22, 2018

Dr. John Medina presented a program based on his Brain Rules

On October 17th, the Glenbard Parent Series hosted a health expo and program with John Medina, based on his books "Attack of the Teenage Brain" and "Brain Rules: Principles for Thriving."

John Medina and Melissa Calfo

Glenbard South parent Melissa Calfo shared this takeaway:
"It's important for parents to understand the teen brain and understand executive function (impulse/self-control). Teens stomping to their rooms and slamming the door is normal adolescent behavior. What works to improve thinking skills and mood is aerobic exercise, sleep and getting your stress under control. Emotional stability in the home is also key. Dr. Medina shared the science behind these facts, facts that apply to us all."

You will always learn at a GPS event.  Please check out Dr. John Medina's web site and many books for more information as well as parent summary notes, below.

Resources for Dr. John Medina

Brain Rules/John Medina web site HERE

Brain Rules/John Medina You Tube Videos HERE

Parent Notes on Dr. John Medina's presentation to GPS on Oct. 17

Jay Giedd - main researcher on Teen Brain Behavior
Michael Posner - main lead on Executive Function
                             - average age the brain finally matures - 24 years
                             - mental time travel - ability to evaluate levels of risk of a potential scenario and make action decisions accordingly
Average initial onset of mental health disorders - 14.1 years of age

It takes 96 hours (4 days) for the body to fully recover from an all nighter.
Average adult needs at least 8 hours of sleep
Average teen needs at least 9.5 hours of sleep

executive function lowers when in need of sleep, as does mood (crankiness)
Blue effect - the glow of devices tricks the brain into thinking it is daylight.
Need to disconnect from screen time at least 2 hours prior to bed.

Brain Rule: Aerobic exercise (NOT strength training) specifically boosts Executive
Function and buffers against negative effects of stress
150 minutes for 7 days = adequate, moderate aerobic exercise
(30 minutes, 5 days per week)

 Tangney - SCS (self control scale), Executive Function Scale

Mindfulness Training - 8 week Training will boost Executive Function