A quick overview of the developmental stages of adolescents AND LEARNED OPTIMISM January, 2009
3 phases of adolescence • Am I normal? • Who am I? • Where am I going?
teenage brains • Gut reactions fully wired • Still under construction is the ability to • Discern • Handle ambiguous information • Plan • Organise • Control emotions • Coordinate conflicting signals
We need to set limits and boundaries, especially when it comes to safety.
ADOLESCENCE IS characterized BY: • A belief in one’s mortality • A desire to experiment • A need for peer approval • Relatively short term relationships
The journey between childhood and young adulthood is marked by 4 key challenges: • Forming a positive identity • Establishing a set of good friends • Breaking the emotional bonds that bind them to their adult carers • Setting meaningful vocational goals
Some things parents can do to help their daughter have a successful education
Enriched Environment • 2. Learned Optimism
WHAT CAN PARENTS DO? Enriched environment • Interpersonal interaction • Interdependent learning at home • Exercise • Value of education
Developing resilience • Feel good self esteem • Optimistic thinking • Learning from failure • How the child thinks, especially when she has failed • Problem Solving
Basis of optimism How we think about the causes of failure.
Permanence Pervasiveness Personalisation
Pessimistic language • ‘always’, ‘never’ • Thinks globally • General self blame Optimistic language • Sometimes, lately • Thinks specific/accurate • Realistic responsibility
How to help develop resilience • Don’t solve every problem for the child • Don’t be overly critical of the child’s attempts to problem solve • Model a flexible problem solving strategy
5 steps to problem solving • Slow down • Perspective taking – put yourself in other’s shoes • Goal setting • Choosing a path or course of action. Compare pros and cons. • If it doesn’t work try another path