Back to school: because it is better not to load children with commitments
According to a study by Yuko Munakata of the University of Colorado in Boulder, published in the magazine Frontiers of Psychology , children who are involved in many school and extracurricular activities reach, on their own, fewer objectives than peers left free to spend time in less structured and self-exploring activities, such as free play alone or with friends.
Researchers subjected children to a series of cognitive tests in order to measure executive autonomy in achieving goals. From the tests it emerged that the little ones too pressed between courses and lessons are in the end those who “make less”, at least as regards the ability to pursue goals independently.
It seems, in fact, that freedom of play and also healthy boredom has more benefits than many courses on the development of the child’s intelligence.
School, tips to save on school supplies
Is there a way to save on school supplies? Some consumer associations, from Codacons to Altroconsumo da Adiconsum, passing through the National Consumers Union, have identified some suggestions, thanks to which it is possible to reduce school expenses by up to 40%.
- Don’t follow fashions. Don’t buy items related to famous characters, cartoons or dolls. Also, turn off the TV: it is before school starts that advertising bombards the boys with targeted messages.
- Make a detailed list. Try to be prepared. Make a local mind about what your child needs for school: the diary, the case, the pens, the notebooks, and so on. And try to buy only what you wrote down.
- Postponed purchases. Often it is only necessary to wait sometime after the start of school to buy at lower prices.
- Wait for the directions of the professors. Both for books and for more technical tools, it is good to wait for instructors to avoid unnecessary purchases or not in line with their needs. For the volumes adopted you can already get an idea of those indicated by the professors on the website of the Italian Association of publishers: www.adozionilibriscolastici.it.
- Buy at the supermarket or online. According to the Codacons in the stores of the large retail chains, it is possible to save up to 30% compared to stationery stores. Based on what Altroconsumo supports, booking and buying school books in the big brands – like Auchan, Esselunga, Despair, and Carrefour – you can take advantage of discounts that on the average go from 15 to 20%. Even online you can do great business: from eBay and Amazon to Libraccio.it, from Libreriascolastica.it to Libreriauniversitaria.it you can find many offers.
- Take advantage of Coupon offers, discount vouchers, promotions. Make conscious shopping and try to take advantage of the opportunities that are around.
- Watch out for the edition. Before buying the most recent edition of a textbook, evaluate if it is really different from the old one: if they are the same, you can buy a used volume.
- Bet on used. The best option is to buy books directly from other students and not in specialized shops: thus it is possible to save up to 50% compared to the cover price.
School, tips for beginning children
School is about to start! Here is a bit of advice for parents, by Dr. Simonetta Gentile, psychotherapist psychologist of the developmental age at the Operative Unit of Child Neuropsychiatry, Head of the Simple Unit of Clinical Psychology of the Bambino Gesù Pediatric Hospital in Rome.
- Make children autonomous and responsible. Take care of the school materials and your study area together, but teach them to be autonomous and responsible for this task.
- Give a routine in the timetable. Always set the same time for the study, preceded by a moment of rest and quiet activities, and followed by more intense games and commitments.
- Parents always informed. Talk together about what was done at school, sharing it at times when the whole family is reunited.
- Value the children for the progress made. Show yourself happy with their successes without overestimating the results. Do not underestimate the negative results, but try to understand together why and to identify the cause and the possibilities for a solution in time, consulting with the teachers as well.
- Do not speak ill of the teacher. Never devaluate the work or behavior of teachers in front of the child: it may come to the conclusion that good or bad in that subject is not important!