Here’s a fascinating article I bumped into on Newsday that, while it doesn’t directly apply to us since our oldest is only 7 1/2, eventually will:
If you’re a teenager, don’t read this. Federal scientists may have
discovered a biological excuse for laziness.
Studies conducted on adolescents and young adults show significant
differences between the two age groups in the brain region that governs
“drive,” the internal momentum to work for a reward.
The article continues:
This region, barely active in adolescence, apparently comes into its own in
the early 20s.
Scientists at the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism used
brain scans to test whether the developing teenage brain is any different
from the mature brain of an adult when faced with an opportunity to make money.
James Bjork and colleagues found that as adults worked to make money in a
research task, their brains experienced an increase in blood flow and
volume in the nucleus accumbens, a region deep in the middle of the brain.
“We actually see the anticipation for winning,” Bjork said.
In contrast, adolescents between ages 12 and 17 who performed the same
research task had half the blood flow and volume in this region, Bjork said.
“We have got to take seriously how big these developmental differences
are,” said Dr. Hans Breiter, director of motivation, emotion and
neuroscience at Massachusetts General Hospital. “This is a beautiful piece
You can learn more, and read the entire article, at Newsday.com.