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Executive Function Strategies Blog

4 Ways to Help Your Child Build Executive Function Skills this Summer

Summer is a great time for sitting on the beach, splashing in the pool, backyard barbecues, and you guessed it: developing Executive Function skills. This time of year, we hear a lot of parents worry that summer won’t be a productive time to learn (or continue to build) these important foundational skills.



When is the Best Time to Work on Improving Executive Function Skills?

When does a minor problem become a major problem? Sometimes the tipping point is just out of view, but it creeps up over time.

In 2013, my primary care doctor came into the room and said to me, “You’ve gained six pounds since you were last here.” Yup. That sounded about right. Seeing as I’m not a scale-watching fanatic, the comment didn’t really affect me. But that wasn’t the end of the discussion. “Six pounds isn’t a problem,” she carefully explained, “unless it’s another six next year and another six the year after that.”  



Why Can't My Child See the Big Picture?

Has your son ever lost points on a test or assignment because he did not follow all the directions? Does your daughter highlight everything when she reads and as a result can’t figure out what to study? Does your son complain about how his teacher is “torturing him” because he does not see the point of the assignment? If any of these common scenarios sound familiar, you may find yourself wondering, “Why does my child miss the big picture?”



The Adolescent Brain: Why Executive Functioning in Teens Is a Challenge

Editor's note: This blog is an excerpt from a longer article The Adolescent Brain: Primed For Thrills And High On Life. Reprinted by permission from The Clay Center for Young Healthy Minds, a division of Massachusetts General Hospital.

Teenagers are convinced they are ready to take the reins, no longer wanting to be held back by overly-cautious adults who don’t really "get it," who don’t understand the urgency of whatever situation is brewing at that moment.