Entries by Dona Matthews

Playtime! Possibly the Best Learning of All

February 22, 2012 Children need more unstructured playtime in their lives. They need time enough to get bored. If they’re going to learn and grow and achieve as much as they can in the long run, they need ample opportunities to develop their self-regulation, imagination, self-awareness, and other important life skills. Over the past few […]

What Does It Mean If a Child Is ‘Scary Smart’?

January 17, 2012 ‘People have told me that my little girl is “scary smart”. Is that going to be a problem for her as she gets older?’ ‘Kids shouldn’t be allowed to get ahead of themselves. If someone’s already great at math, let him learn about reading or develop his social skills.’ ‘I’d rather be […]

Children, Gifts, and Holidays

December 17, 2011 Another holiday season, another reason for buying presents. Or not. Another reason, maybe, to think about the kinds of gifts we’re already blessed with, and those we have to give, without buying much at all. There’s nothing new about this anti-materialistic perspective, but when I look around me, I realise it’s a […]

The Intelligence Edge

December 3, 2011 We come back to a theme we’re encountering a lot these days: parents – stressed by the demands and insecurities they’re experiencing in their own lives— wonder how they can ensure their children will have the intelligence edge they’ll need in this fast-paced and rapidly-changing world. What can parents do to support […]

Wisdom in Children?

October, 2011 Although wisdom is often associated with later adulthood, its seeds are planted in childhood. The most important thing that parents can do to support the development of wisdom in their children is to model these attributes in their own lives. That means taking others’ needs into account, as well as one’s own, and […]

What if We Don’t Label Smart Kids ‘Smart’?

October 8, 2011 When children are ahead of their peers in their learning needs, their parents usually have lots of questions about what to do next. How do they make sure their children get an education that is challenging enough, without being stigmatized? “I want my child to have the more challenging education that she […]

The Times They Are A-Changin’

August 28, 2011 The world is changing rapidly all around us, in large ways and small. As I write this, Hurricane Irene is raging up the east coast of the United States, the rebel fighters appear to be making advances into Tripoli and bringing down the regime of Muammar Gaddafi, countless new electronic devices and […]

The Broom Is More Powerful Than the Baseball Bat

August 14, 2011 Late this week, across England, brigades of mostly young people gathered, carrying brooms, in areas where looting had destroyed their neighbours’ shops and homes over the previous few days. The broom brigade came together in the same way that the gangs of looters had come together with baseball bats a few days […]