As overwhelmed teachers panic and send out ‘death by worksheet’ and super-stressed parents get competitive about how many their child has completed… Here’s one quick thing to try instead with amazing research behind it.
We all know the benefits of getting our thoughts out of our heads in a diary and seeing our feelings in the idle drawings and doodlings we create, but if we try to do it regularly and incorporate some gratitude, neuroscientists tell us amazing things happen to us!
- Gratitude is proven to make our children happier. Science has shown the effect on our brains of taking time to regularly notice all the good things in life. Encourage them to write it down, say thank you, and reflect on the good they have done. Giving and receiving thanks is a natural antidepressant: our brain releases dopamine and serotonin, our feel-good neurotransmitters (brain chemicals).
- It boosts their immune system, promotes better sleep and reduces pain. Exactly what we need in a pandemic.
- Studies show it boosts resilience and helps them be less affected by traumatic events. Don’t we all need a bit of that right now?!
- It keeps them writing (which maintains the strength and dexterity in their growing fingers) but they are writing for a real purpose that will have a genuine impact in the long term.
Our children’s time, buy-in and focus is precious, we don’t want to waste it.