Tuesday, July 6, 2010

AN EXTRA HALF-HOUR SLEEP FOR TEENS

Here is one for high school administrators to consider, Scientific American reports that starting high school classes just 30 minutes later leads to marked improvement in students' moods and even their overall health.

Apparently teens need 8½ to 9¼ hours of sleep a night and a later start lowered the number of highschool-age students who said they were "unhappy, depressed, annoyed or irritated."

My first reaction was, get them to go to bed earlier, but biological changes associated with adolescence mean they naturally fall asleep later than younger kids. Beginning at adolescence, kids have what’s called a delayed sleep phase, where they start sleep later and sleep later in the morning. And they need plenty.

My middle guy is eight and I think Liam may already be in this delayed sleep phase. You need dynamite to get him out of bed in the morning. One of these days I am gonna just leave him there and see how long he would continue to sleep.

If it makes kids less irritable and pay better attention it might be worth considering.

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