WWLP: New site breaks down Mass. early childhood systems

WWLP: New site breaks down Mass. early childhood systems. “The Rennie Center for Education and Research Policy and the Massachusetts Early Childhood Funder Collaborative unveiled Early Childhood 101, an interactive website that maps out all the various ways in which young kids and parents interact with programs and services like health care, housing support, employment assistance and more.”

MakeUseOf: The 6 Best Smartphone Apps for Children With Autism

MakeUseOf: The 6 Best Smartphone Apps for Children With Autism. “The Google Play Store is flooded with apps for children to enjoy, but many are designed for entertainment and early learning. There is an underserved population of children, though, that has another set of needs: children with autism. For the parents of these children (and I am one of them), it can be a struggle finding digital resources to help your children learn about the complex world around them. So we’ve selected some of the best Android or iPhone apps you can use below.” Mostly learning/social understanding type games, with a little AAC thrown in.

Illinois News Bureau: More physical activity, less screen time linked to better executive function in toddlers, study finds

Illinois News Bureau: More physical activity, less screen time linked to better executive function in toddlers, study finds . “Reported in The Journal of Pediatrics, the study found that 24-month-old children who spent less than 60 minutes looking at screens each day and those who engaged in daily physical activity had better executive function than those who didn’t meet the guidelines.”

WJZY: Pre-teens lose full night of sleep a week to social media, new study

WJZY: Pre-teens lose full night of sleep a week to social media, new study. “A study out of Leicester, England with De Montfort University monitored 10- and 11-year-olds participating in social media. Researchers found the subjects were only getting about 8.7 hours of sleep each night. The recommended amount for the age group is nine to 11 hours. Young people cite increased social media usage as a fear of missing out, commonly known as FOMO. They said they didn’t want to miss a post or message from their friends.”

Vanderbilt University: VKC introduces new toolkits promoting neurodiversity, self-determination in early childhood services

Vanderbilt University: VKC introduces new toolkits promoting neurodiversity, self-determination in early childhood services. “The Vanderbilt Kennedy Center (VKC)(TN IDDRC, UCEDD, LEND) recently introduced two brand-new educational resources created by the VKC’s Treatment and Research Institute for Autism Spectrum Disorders (TRIAD) and the Vanderbilt Consortium LEND Training Program.”

WBIR: How to combat child reading loss in a pandemic

WBIR: How to combat child reading loss in a pandemic. “Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program scores from 2021 show that roughly 71% of kids grades 3 through 8 are below proficient reading levels. In 2018, it was around 60%. Reading is important for a child’s development, namely their language skills. The American Academy of Pediatrics said there are things you can do right now to help your child fall in love with reading early and ways to encourage more reading for your pre-teens and older kids.”

BBC: The drama of Peru’s Covid orphans

BBC: The drama of Peru’s Covid orphans. “Peru has been battered by Covid-19, with more than 202,500 deaths in a population of under 33 million. One of the most tragic effects of the pandemic here is the number of children who have been left without a mother, father, or some other caregiver. There are at least 93,000 of them, according to the medical journal The Lancet. And even though one of their parents might still be alive, they are referred to as ‘Covid orphans’.”

NPR: There’s a surge of mental health issues for kids back for in-school learning

NPR: There’s a surge of mental health issues for kids back for in-school learning. “For kids around the country, this school year was supposed to bring a return to normalcy, ending the isolation and stress of remote or hybrid learning. But halfway through the year, schools and health care providers say they’re seeing a massive rise in students struggling with mental and behavioral health problems. NPR’s Rhitu Chatterjee has the story.”

CNN: A Texas teen couldn’t speak with his sister, so he created an app to give her a voice

CNN: A Texas teen couldn’t speak with his sister, so he created an app to give her a voice. “Archer Calder spent his childhood unable to talk with his younger sister, Della, his only sibling. Della has Bainbridge-Ropers syndrome, a rare genetic condition which affects her ability to eat, move and speak…. Archer began using his coding abilities to develop a web-based application called Freespeech. The site can be accessed from any device — phones, tablets and computers — with internet access. The simple website lets users program buttons with images of their choice to represent words. When clicked, the word is sounded out loud.”

Americas Quarterly: With Schools Reopening, Latin America Surveys the Damage

Americas Quarterly: With Schools Reopening, Latin America Surveys the Damage. “As schools gradually reopen around the world, two questions are at the front of educators’ minds: How much ground did students lose during more than 20 months of pandemic-imposed closures, and how can policymakers close the learning gap? In Latin America and the Caribbean, both questions are just starting to be answered. Schools in the region were closed for an average of 231 days prior to October 2021, longer than any other part of the world.”

Washington Post: Parents wondered whether learning remotely could work as well as being in a classroom. New global data suggests the answer is no.

Washington Post: Parents wondered whether learning remotely could work as well as being in a classroom. New global data suggests the answer is no.. “Of all the pandemic edicts — the mask requirements, the vaccination mandates — few were more contentious than the decision to shutter schools. At the peak of closures last year, 1.6 billion students in 188 countries were locked out. Across the globe, 700 million of them reside in partially or fully closed school districts. To learn, the pandemic generation turned to laptops, cellphones, televisions and radios, leaving parents asking a nagging question: Could learning remotely work as well as being in a classroom? For the most part, new data suggests, the answer is no.”

University of Maryland Baltimore: Free Video Series Can Help Kids be ‘Unstuck and On Target’

University of Maryland Baltimore: Free Video Series Can Help Kids be ‘Unstuck and On Target’ . “The series of free, educational videos are designed to support parents and caregivers tackling common emotional and behavioral topics to help children to stay organized, plan and reach their goals, be flexible thinkers and help regulate their feelings. Behavioral specialists call these skills executive functioning. By following the tips and skills in the videos, parents can help their children be successful, avoid meltdowns and negativity, and develop a shared language and ways of interacting to achieve calmer, more productive days.” There are 17 videos here. Five of them are in Spanish. You can turn on captioning (the videos are on YouTube) and the ones I spot-checked looked accurate.