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jazzer 09-09-2016 12:08 PM

I thought this was interesting. Comparing education now and in the past
I came across this article today which claims that according to research, 5 to 8 times more children today have depression and anxiety. Than those going all the way back to the 1950's.

They feel this is due to the lack of control kids have today as they are not able to play freely anymore, and have more test score pressure put on them. I found it an interesting read. Hopefully the link works.

twinmom95 09-09-2016 12:32 PM

I totally agree as I've been teaching 31 years. I think the pressure of testing, the fact that very few children have unstructured play time, all the video games and electronics they are now using from infancy on, and the hurried and/or stressed schedules of families as well as how many children now are from families of divorced parents so going back and forth between households or never really knew one parent(and I know there are well adjusted happy kids from these situations, but there are also many anxious kids and it is a big change from when I was a kid)....all those things I believe contribute to varying degrees. I am in upper elem. and I see a huge difference!!

BioAdoptMom3 09-09-2016 08:10 PM

I totally agree! I couldn't read the article but I also think its the reason a lot of young children are now being diagnosed with ADHD, especially the little boys. Our expectations of them sitting still for long periods of time to listen, work, etc. is developmentally inappropriate and their responses are generally within what should be expected of their age group. Its one of the main reasons I retired when I did. I could not continue to come into my K classroom day after day and teach in a way that I knew was developmentally inappropriate and even harmful to children.


GraceKrispy 09-11-2016 08:44 AM

Thanks for posting that! I really agree that the locus of control is a big change and problem for many kids. Think about how much more involved so many parents are these days (a la helicopter moms) and how structured and micromanaged so many kids' lives are. As teachers, we know to try to give some choices throughout the day to give kids some sense of control and satisfaction in their tasks, but that is just a tiny bit of freedom. I don't think a lot of kids even get very many small choices like that regularly.

I try to be really aware of things like that- especially with play- but I even notice the difference between when I was growing up and the way my kids are growing up. My kids are not over scheduled at all and never have been, except what they now put on themselves (my daughter likes to be involved in EVERYTHING and my oldest son took on an intense sport this semester along with his regular extracurricular because he needs the PE credit if he wants to take the classes he wants to take for the last few years of h.s.). They have always been good at imaginative play and spending time playing alone and with each other in unstructured settings. Unfortunately, video games and other tech is pretty enticing (for us all, not just kids!).

It is interesting to realize that things like depression and anxiety may be much more impacted by our personal sphere than by the wider world (e.g., our personal feelings versus major events happening). I also think the world feels less safe, which makes parents more controlling over their kids' lives as well. I think the ease of communication and information travel (like the internet) has helped increase our feeling of less safety and security. So some of the ways our lives have been made "better" have actually made our lives worse.

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