Wednesday, March 3, 2021
Executive function (EF) skills are the mental processes that enable us to plan, focus attention, remember instructions, and juggle tasks. They depend on three types of brain function: working memory, mental flexibility, and self-control. They are foundational for children’s early learning, positive behaviour and development. Research has shown that adverse childhood experiences such as poverty and trauma can have a sustained negative impact on the development of executive function skills. This talk will explore to what extent supporting children to develop strong executive function skills early could serve as a protective factor that disrupts the deleterious impact of poverty and trauma on children’s learning and development. It will also summarise some of the key research insights for practitioners about how best to create environments that support children to develop these skills early.
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