BAD SLEEP HABITS THAT AFFECT CHILDREN AND THEIR LEARNING


If you read our article about how proper nutrition and exercise lead to better performance in the classroom, then it should come as no surprise that developing good sleep habits also has a positive impact on a student’s academic performance. In fact, developing good sleep habits can positively impact a child’s physical and mental well-being and overall development. But in this age of ever-present technology, children are developing bad sleep habits at earlier ages, and it is having a negative impact on their classroom learning.

A recent study conducted by McGill University researchers has concluded that students are forming bad sleep habits at much younger ages than in previous years. According to the study,

The researchers studied the sleep patterns of children aged six to 11 years old, and found that those aged 8-11 increasingly showed the unhealthy patterns usually associated with adolescence: delayed bedtimes, inconsistent schedules, and sleep deprivation. Such patterns have been shown to impair children’s physical and mental health, as well as academic performance.”

The study reported a variety of issues, including increasingly later start times for sleep and shorter duration of sleep time for the children surveyed, and results of the study showed that alarmingly low rates of children (particularly students ages 10-11) are receiving the recommended amount of sleep for their age.

According to Reut Gruber, an associate professor in McGill’s Department of Psychiatry and lead author of the study who also serves as Director of the Attention, Behavior and Sleep Lab at Montreal’s Douglas Mental Health University Institute and the Canadian Sleep Society (CSS) Officer—Media & Advocacy; CSS Pediatric Sleep Interest Group:

We recommend that parents of children of all ages ensure their children:

  • Get sufficient amount of good quality sleep

  • Go to bed at the same time every night

  • Wake up at the same time every morning

  • Learn to appreciate the importance of sleep to their health, mood and academic success

  • Get help if unable to fall asleep, stay asleep, get sufficient sleep, or if they do not appear well-rested in the morning.”

The National Sleep Foundation offers a chart of recommended sleep time for individuals ranging from infant to senior adult, broken out by age group, with most school aged children requiring 9-10 hours of sleep per day, on average. Of course each child is unique and has unique needs, so parents are encouraged to discuss irregular sleep patterns or sleep concerns with their child’s health care provider.

If your student is receiving the proper amount of sleep, but still needs help performing his/her best in school, contact Shazia Lakhani at Club Z In- Home Tutoring , at (630) 326-8886 or slakhani@clubztutoring.com You may also click here to learn more about The ClubZ Advantage.

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