Sunday, February 19, 2012

Emotions, Middle School, and the Plague of Disorganization

I just finished reading a nice article about how emotions and self-regulation may have a negative effect on how well someone is able to remain organized and on-task titled, Life's Messy.  Train Your Brain to Adapt by Megan Erickson for bingthink.com.

In addition to drawing upon research to explain how the brain works to regulate stress and emotions, the article points to how the energy used by that function depletes our ability to follow through on goals and remain on-task and organized.  Fortunately, all is not lost!  the piece also provides expert opinions on how to redirect our energy and adapt our brain to handle life's complexities.

As a middle school administrator, one of the most challenging parts of working with students is helping them get better organized.  The article helped provide a possible explanation for the middle school "plague of disorganization" by explaining how the brain functions can get in the way - especially for middle school students who are in a constant battle to understand and express their emotions.

Maybe one way of looking at middle school disorganization is to see it as a sign of higher levels of emotional intelligence and self-regulation (a good thing) that leaves very little energy to use for staying organized.

If you are an adult who works with "middle scholars" what tips can you  share to to either help support organization or emotional intelligence?
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