Author: Carolyn Fruin

child and teacher
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Clinician Spotlight: Executive Function, ADHD, and Academic Success

Self-regulation and Executive Function (EF) rely on three key types of brain function: working memory, mental flexibility, and inhibitory control. These highly interrelated skills are imperative to a child’s development. But what does this mean for children diagnosed with ADHD? A Bit of Background In a recently published study done by Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical…

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COVID-19, Student Trauma, and Executive Function

Everyday, we are bombarded with  new information on and experiences with COVID-19. While we may be acutely aware of how the pandemic impacts us personally we may not know how the pandemic is impacting our children or students, or  how to prevent possible long-term negative effects. It’s logical to presume that many children are experiencing…

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Resources for Educators

Get Certified in Executive Function

Whether you know it or not, Executive Function (EF) is present in your classroom. From lining up for recess in elementary school to performing a lab experiment in high school, the brain’s air traffic control system is being fine-tuned at these moments. According to EF expert and co-founder of the Reflection Sciences, Dr. Stephanie Carlson,…

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What is Executive Function?

Executive Function, or “EF”, is a distinct set of skills imperative to school readiness and academic success. Scientists refer to these skills as the biological foundation for adaptation and learning throughout life. They argue that strong working memory, cognitive flexibility, and inhibitory control – the 3 components of EF – provide the basis upon which…

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What Educators and Parents Need to Know About Childhood Trauma

“Trauma” has become a buzzword of sorts. You might have heard the term “trauma-informed education” or heard someone say that they feel “triggered”. These words and phrases have gained popularity, with some even suggesting that “trauma” was the mental health buzzword of 2018. The American Psychological Association defines trauma as, “an emotional response to a…

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The Family Partnership: Leveraging a Two-Generation Approach to Improve Executive Function in Families

We know that families are the foundation of a strong and thriving community. Unfortunately, however, many factors such as living in poverty, absence of mental health care, and lack of educational opportunities can impede families’ wellbeing. The Family Partnership is a 142-year-old non-profit organization based in Minneapolis focused on closing the achievement and opportunity gaps…

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Keeping Kids Sharp During the Coronavirus Quarantine

Kids of all ages are being affected by school closures brought on by the novel coronavirus pandemic. For school-age children, the transition to home-schooling and remote learning can be jarring and challenge their developing executive function skills. This period of social isolation and school disruption can be a good opportunity for parents to engage with…