EXECUTIVE FUNCTION AT-HOME RESOURCE GUIDE FOR FAMILIES AND TEACHERS
In light of the COVID-19 global pandemic, families, educators, and school leaders across the country and around the world have been quickly working to identify and adopt at-home teaching and learning best practices. It has undoubtedly been a stressful time as families and schools struggle to keep children safe while striving to bolster students’ academic progress and mental and emotional well-being. District and school administrators, teachers, state and federal agencies, and nonprofits have all worked tirelessly to get resources out to students and families; and still we know there is no letting up on these efforts, even as we settle into what a new normal means—at least in the short-term.
As schools continue to wrestle with whether on-site classes will be possible in the near future, and what the format and seat-time of these classes might look like, at-home academic offerings continue to be more important than ever. At BrainFutures, we recognize that many families and educators are overwhelmed with making sense of which virtual teaching resources to use, and what works. We hope our new At-Home Executive Function Resources | A Guide for Families and Educators will help.
In September 2019, BrainFutures’ released Brain Fitness and Executive Function | Evidence-Based Interventions that Improve Student Outcomes, an issue brief on school-based executive function (EF) programs. Key EF skills include working memory, self-control and cognitive flexibility which form the foundation for more complex cognitive processing including planning, reasoning, problem-solving, goal-directed action, and self-motivation. In other words, these executive function skills are critical for learning to be successful. EF programs build the fundamental skills needed to succeed academically and that also undergird emotional well-being (see Executive Function and Mental Health). In our report, ten school-based programs that met our evidence-based threshold were featured. Many of these programs offer at-home options and/or resources that can help as families, teachers, and schools adapt to supporting student learning beyond the traditional classroom. This guide is an overview of what these trusted programs currently have available for at-home use.
Whether you are a parent looking for programs to boost your student’s cognitive and resiliency skills, an educator seeking professional development opportunities, or a school leader eager to offer your families, teachers, and students proven programs that improve learning and emotional wellbeing, we’re confident that you’ll find this at-home companion guide to our report a valuable resource.