When to Start School

Whatever profession we work in, from time to time we all get one of those “I told you so” moments – a moment when we come across some evidence that so overwhelmingly backs up and supports a viewpoint that we hold dear.

I confess that when reading this article i had just such a moment.

New Scientist – Too Much, Too Young

I get startled when i read articles from the UK and American media advocating for earlier ‘schoolifying’ of young children. Obviously, working for many years in Asian cultures I’ve been very used to the impact of parental aspirations as the demands for early academic activity are sometimes almost overpowering. Lay people can’t seem to resist the idea that if they can just get a ‘head start’ for their child on reading, writing etc. then they can stack the odds in their child’s favour for a life of success and beating out the competition.

As the experts cited in this article attest, scientific evidence doesn’t back these ideas at all. Instead, it represents a form of ‘Russian roulette’ as the parent crosses their fingers that their child is an early neurological developer who will fair well in this academic hothouse climate.

Instead, our duty is to provide a high quality genuinely play-based environment where children can build their interpersonal and other skills whilst engaging in creative forms of play.

Did anyone ever put their child in remedial class for being a late walker??? !!

Creative Education Uses for Google Hangouts

Here’s a nice short article in which a teacher shares some innovative ideas for how to use Google Hangouts as a learning tool with children:

The Journal – Article – Google Hangouts

I love to see the innovative ways technology is being used to go beyond simply new ways to ‘show and tell’.

Working Longer Hours Doesn’t Necessarily Work

Here’s a well thought out article about ‘the working week’, with evidence about what makes sense that is quite compelling.

Business Insider – Why Working Six Days a Week is Bad For You

In those organisations where people habitually work like this, in my experience in developing countries it has more to do with inefficiency built in to systems, high tolerance for time-wasting behaviour and macho individual competitiveness that equates simple time in office with output achieved.

After reading this article – I’m looking forward to my vacation even more!

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