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Executive Function Strategies Blog

Can Mindfulness Improve Executive Function Skills?

A couple of years ago I learned the secret to getting a group of sixth graders to participate in class: simply ask them if they are stressed out. This was my icebreaker question to introduce the topic of mindfulness. In response, it seemed as though the entire class raised their hands. And there was not enough time to allow everyone to share what stressed them out. These results were repeated with each class that I taught.



The ABCs of Reducing Anxiety for Students Going Back to School

We’ve all had that surge of nervous energy as a big event is coming up and learning to control the jitters, or emotionally regulate, can be a challenge for both students and adults. As the start of the school year approaches, you might notice anxiety building as your child anticipates new teachers, a new schedule, and the other big changes. Let’s explore some ABCs of reducing anxiety from a coaching perspective that can help smooth out the bumps during these transition times for students.



7 Self-Regulation Tips to Reduce Homework Battles With Your Child

Editor's note: This week, we feature guest blogger Hanna Bogen, a Speech-Language Pathologist and Social-Cognitive Specialist based in Los Angeles, CA. Please read her full bio below.

Few tasks test self-regulation skills like homework time. Self-regulation is critical to one’s ability to manage challenging or complex situations, and homework time is no exception. Strong self-regulation is multifaceted; it involves regulation of one’s thoughts, emotions, actions, and motivation. Although these skills continue to develop into adulthood, building and strengthening them from an early age can reduce stress and provide the drive to attempt new experiences. Students can integrate practices into home and school activities that strengthen and support a foundation of self-regulation. Below are seven tips students can use in their daily routines to promote happier homework time.



Emotional Regulation and Executive Function Skills: A Powerful Link

Executive function can be likened to the brain’s air traffic control center.* The air traffic director must safely, quickly, and effectively manage dozens of flights into and out of an airport with multiple runways and terminals. Now, imagine this director on the job, in the control tower, and he is feeling enraged. Or terrified. Or bereaved. In any of these scenarios, is he able to manage all the complex demands of the bustling airport while his emotions are running so hot?