Parlor Spider...Step In, Little Fly

Insightful thoughts and/or rants from atop the soapbox from one who wishes to share the "right" opinion with everyone.

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Wake Up and Read This!

Educators and parents have been saying, probably since the days of Socrates, that students need to get solid sleep every night. The reason Mondays are so "meh" for so many people is that they stay up late and get up late every weekend, a habit that disrupts the normal sleep pattern and makes for Garfield Mondays. No amount of suggestion or criticism seems to sway these part-time night owls turned full-time somnambulists come Monday. Research completed recently at Boston college will add more fuel to the fire of "Get to bed!" but it probably won't help.
Researchers found that, by a wide margin, American students are far more sleep deprived than any others worldwide. In fact, according to the study, 73% of 9-10 year-olds got less sleep than they should while 80% of those ages 13-14 got less than optimal sleep. these numbers compare to the international average of sleep-needy primary students (47%) and secondary students (57%). Quite a significant gap.
all of this leads to the inevitable conclusion that american math, science and reading scores are so much lower because our students are not getting enough sleep. The study furthers explains that the link to sleep deprivation and poor academic performance is exactly like the link between poor nutrition and poor academic performance!
So, what's to blame? The easy target is technology: kids have phones on which they send and receive messages 24/7. They have computer tablets that allow all sorts of activity from social media to web-based research (yes, I know phones do the same thing). An additional problem lies in the light emitted by the tech devices as well. It is said that when a user holds such a device close to his or her face, these lights disrupt the circadian rhythm and forestall sleep.
all of this points to the flip side of modern society: the benefits we reap can also be the liabilities we suffer. I'm glad I didn't have to face all of that growing up: when it got too dark to plow, we ate and went to bed after scratching out any homework in coal on the back of a slate board.
Ah, the "good old days."


Post a Comment

<< Home