Dream IT: Content

Here’s more about what I want to explore with this project.

In my Dream It project, my PCG students will explore an issue of their choice related to balance and sleep. In Grade 7, many students are making the often rocky transition into independent young adults. Bedtimes and after school activities are major battlegrounds in this journey. They want to please their parents but they also want to make their own decisions about their free time. But do they really have a good grasp on the best way to use their time?

A number of studies have established the clear link between a lack of sleep and poor performance in school (Curcio et al, 2006 being one of a myriad number). But if the students I teach and their parents are aware of this common fact about how the brain works, why do some students still turn up exhausted? What is causing this? Do they have a misunderstanding of this simple fact? If so, how can I work with the students and parents to achieve an appropriate amount of sleep each night?

Not as much research has been done on the long term developmental effects of having too little or too much free time after school. One finding is that students with too much free time correlate with students who are defined as at-risk (Larson, 2001). But are there negative effects to having too little free time after school? Or is Amy Chua and her influential “Chinese parenting” mentality of not allowing a child to choose their own extracurriculars the right one for future success? (Chua, 2013). What are the positive and negative side effects from having a busy schedule after school hours?

Next: Pedagogy

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