David Wilkinson

Banisher of fears, slayer of anxiety & developer of emotional resilience

Children with emotion regulation skills do better at school - and are happier.

Children with emotion regulation skills do better at school - and are happier.

There is a growing body of evidence to show that a child's ability to regulate their own emotions, their general affective disposition ( their usual range of moods and what kind of mood they habitually display, in other words are they generally a happy individual or not) and their academic achievement are quite closely linked.

There have been a series of studies over the last ten years which have assessed student's ability to identify, manage and change their own emotional responses to situations and events and how well they have done at school and university. Virtually every study has come the same conclusion. Students who are able to regulate their own emotions and have more stable mood patterns tend to not only do better at school at all levels from primary school to high school or sixth form level and into University, but they also experience less dropouts in high school/sixth form and university.

Programmes and interventions such as ours currently running in schools in the UK, US and Africa to improve emotional literacy and emotion regulatory ability are showing positive early indications. These include an improvement in empathy within the groups, reports of lower levels of anxiety, less violence and increases in academic attainment.

References

Cybele, R.C. etal (2007) The roles of emotion regulation and emotion knowledge for children's academic readiness: Are the links causal? in Pianta et al (2007). School readiness and the transition to kindergarten in the era of accountability. , (pp. 121-147). Baltimore, MD, US: Paul H Brookes Publishing, xx, 364 pp.

Howse, R.B. (2003) Regulatory Contributors to Children's Kindergarten Achievement. Early Education & Development Volume 14, Issue 1, 2003.

Graziano, P.A. (2007) The role of emotion regulation in children's early academic success. Journal of School Psychology. Volume 45, Issue 1, February 2007, Pages 3–19

Gumora, G. & Arsenio, W.F. (2002) Emotionality, Emotion Regulation, and School Performance in Middle School Children. Journal of School Psychology. Volume 40, Issue 5, September–October 2002, Pages 395–413

Pekrun, R. etal (2002) Academic Emotions in Students' Self-RegulatedLearning and Achievement: A Program of Qualitative and Quantitative Research. Educational Psychologist Volume 37, Issue 2, 2002

Zeman, J. et al (2006) Emotion Regulation in Children and Adolescents. Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics: April 2006 - Volume 27 - Issue 2 - pp 155-168

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