How Teaching Self-Restraint May Provide Answers to Improving Education

Self-restraint underlies traits like perseverance and determination: which are directly linked to higher achievements in school, as well as in the workplace.

It has been published throughout various studies (for the past few decades) that a particularly malleable point for brain development is in early childhood. Because of these findings, society and education have renewed interest in early childhood learning. Newer research demonstrates that there is another period where the brain has similar elasticity: adolescence.

Laurence Steinberg wrote a convincing article about this topic in October’s Educational Leadership (ASCD); he argued that given this period for potential development, it’s an ideal time to introduce mindfulness and SEL programs. The goal being to teach students self-restraint, thereby improving overall educational performance and setting children up for success outside of the classroom. It is one thing to teach students academia, it’s another to instill in them the spirit and drive to apply that knowledge.

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