“It’s A Boy” – Understanding Male Development from Kindergarten through High School
There is a growing gap between girls and boys in education. Girls, on average, outperform boys in elementary school, middle school, high school, college and graduate school. Is this just a public school problem? It is not. Girls are outperforming boys in independent schools as well. Often the bottom quarter of a senior class in an independent school is 70% boys, the mirror image of the top quarter which is dominated by girls. Even teachers who love boys find themselves frustrated by boys’ lack of academic motivation, their disinterest in reading, their minimalist approach to homework and and their raunchy humor. Wishing that boys were more like girls does not constitute a plan. We need to understand boys on their own terms. Dr. Thompson will introduce participants to the most recent research on boy development, starting from birth and continuing through adolescence. There are now over sixty studies showing that there are significant differences between the male and female brain. Some of these findings have implications for the way we motivate, teach and discipline boys.
Michael Thompson, Ph.D. is a consultant, author and psychologist specializing in children and families. He is the clinical consultant to The Belmont Hill School and has worked in more than five hundred schools across the United States, as well as in international schools in Central America, Europe and Asia. He and his co-author, Dan Kindlon, wrote the New York Times best-selling book, Raising Cain: Protecting the Emotional Life of Boys (Ballantine Books, 1999). He is the author of Speaking of Boys: Answers to the Most-Asked Questions About Raising Sons Ballantine, 2000), and co-author (with Catherine O'Neill Grace and Larry Cohen, Ph.D.) of Best Friends/Worst Enemies: Understanding the Social Worlds of Children (Ballantine, 2001) and Mom, They're Teasing Me: Helping Your Child Solve Social Problems (Ballantine, 2002.) About Best Friends, Worst Enemies, the Publishers Weekly review declared, "Not since Dr. Spock and Penelope Leach has there been such a sensitive and practical guide to raising healthy children." The Pressured Child: Helping Your Child Achieve Success in School and in Life (with Teresa Barker, Ballantine, 2004) was written to help parents understand the complex journey of children through school, from Kindergarten through senior year. His latest book, It's a Boy!, is a comprehensive guide for the parents of boys. A dedicated speaker and traveler, Michael Thompson has appeared on The Today Show, The Oprah Winfrey Show, ABC 20/20, CBS 60 Minutes, The Early Show and Good Morning America. He has been quoted in the New York Times, The Washington Post, Newsweek, Time and U.S. News and World Report and has been a guest on NPR's "Morning Edition" with Susan Stamberg, "Talk of the Nation" with Ray Suarez and the Diane Rhem Show.
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