Supporting Your Child’s Development of “Executive Function” or Self-control: A Conversation with U of MN Researcher Dr. Stephanie Carlson
What researchers call “executive function” and most parents call “self-control” encompasses everything from paying attention in class to resisting the impulse to punch someone who gets in your space to managing frustration with a difficult project. However it shows up in daily life, executive function is key to school success and positive relationships. So how does executive function develop in children and what role do we play as parents in promoting good executive function? Dr. Stephanie Carlson, professor in the University of Minnesota’s Institute of Child Development (College of Education and Human Development), has been studying this important aspect of child development and brings helpful insights and practical tips to her discussion with Marti and Erin in this week’s Mom Enough show.
Whatever the ages of your children, what examples do you see of their growing “executive function” or self-control? In what situations do your children seem to lack (or struggle with) self-control? Based on what you heard in this Mom Enough discussion, describe two or three things you could do to support your children’s development of executive function.