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Most teenagers happy with life, study finds

BBC – Katherine Sellgren

“Most 15-year-olds report being happy with their lives, an international study of students’ well-being suggests. The report by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development found an average satisfaction score of 7.3 on a scale from nought to 10. UK teenagers had a below average satisfaction score of seven. But anxiety about exams and bullying remains a problem for many young people. And heavy internet use leaves many feeling lonely and less satisfied.”(more)

6 Free Activities For Kids That Don’t Feel Like Exercise

The Huffington Post – Alyson Schafer

“The weather is getting warmer and we can’t wait to finally enjoy the fresh air and sunshine. But as much as we all yearn for those hot days, let’s face it, not all kids love the outdoors. Perhaps they are not naturally sporty or they prefer their beloved Xbox games, but it can be tough to make some kids get outside and be active. According to reports, Canadian children have become more sedentary in general. The 2016 Participaction Report Card says children should get one accumulated hour of heavy sweat-inducing exercise a day in addition to several hours of light activity. (However, a new study found that kids need just 10 minutes of intense activity a day.) Turns out, only nine per cent of kids get the proper amount of exercise, and only 24 per cent of five- to 17-year-olds meet the Canadian Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines recommendation of no more than two hours of recreational screen time per day, with the average five- to 17-year-old Canadian spending 8.5 hours being sedentary each day.”(more)

Strong early education equals better relationships with parents

UPI – Amy Wallace

“Researchers at Virginia Tech have found children who get high-quality education at an early age have better relationships with their parents as adults. The study by scientists at Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute followed 96 children participating in the Abecedarian Project, an early education program for at-risk infants and children started in 1971 and funded by the National Institutes of Health.”(more)

A little vigorous exercise may help boost kids’ cardiometabolic health

Medical X-Press – Staff Writer

“As little as 10 minutes a day of high-intensity physical activity could help some children reduce their risk of developing heart problems and metabolic diseases such as diabetes, according to an international study led by a researcher at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center. The investigators found that replacing light-intensity physical activity with brief periods of vigorous exercise may provide significant cardiometabolic benefits in young people with relatively large waist measurements and elevated levels of insulin in their blood.”(more)

Kids tune in to adult body talk

The Star – Kristen Thompson

“But Sabiston, who also holds a Canada Research Chair in physical activity and mental health, says social comparisons, including those around body shape, are happening in very young children. In many cases, it stems from hearing parents talk, and it can set kids up to become self-conscious at a very young age. “We know that any conversation parents have, especially if it’s about the child, their ears tune in immediately,” says Sabiston. “They are listening to every word you say.” And if kids hear adults discussing body shapes and sizes, they start to copy those behaviours and engage in similar conversations with friends.”(more)

More intense parenting for first-born children mean they do better at school – new research

The Telegraph – Henry Bodkin

“First born children perform better at school because they receive more intense attention from their parents, new research reveals. Data from thousands of families over more than a decade found that parents spent the most time developing the thinking skills of their eldest son or daughter, but then became more relaxed with subsequent children. They tended to take part in fewer activities with their young children, such as reading with them, doing crafts and playing musical instruments.”(more)