Smart Kids Make Bad Choices

*The following is excerpted from an online article posted on HealthDay. Smart students usually know better than to light up a cigarette. But when it comes to drinking alcohol or smoking marijuana, these same whiz kids are likely to let knowledge take a backseat to “party” time. New research from the United Kingdom revealed that students who excel in English, math and science appear to be less likely to smoke cigarettes than those with poorer grades. But smart teens are more likely than their less-brainy peers to knock back some drinks or smoke pot. The study, led by James Williams of the University College London, UCL Medical School, included about 6,000 students, starting at the age of 11.

Yelling Doesn't Help

*The following is excerpted from an online article posted on HealthDay. “Harsh” parenting that includes frequent yelling, hitting and threats may bring out the worst in teens’ behavior instead of getting them to toe the line, a new study suggests. Tracking nearly 1,500 students over nine years, researchers found that those who were parented harshly in seventh grade were more likely to turn to their peers in unhealthy ways, such as hanging out with friends instead of doing homework or engaging in early sexual behavior. The researchers also found that those who were parented harshly were more likely to drop out of school. “We’re primed as individuals to pay attention to our environmental cues.

Children Act What Has Been Modeled to Them At Home

Developmental psychologists have always known children learn by imitating adults. Now, a new study of Australian preschoolers and Kalahari Bushman children finds that a particular kind of imitation — over-imitation, in which a child copies everything an adult shows them, not just the steps that lead to some outcome — appears to be a universal human activity. Researchers believe the work sheds light on how humans develop and transmit culture. Scientists “have been finding this odd effect where children will copy everything that they see an adult demonstrate to them, even if there are clear or obvious reasons why those actions would be irrelevant,” says psychologist Mark Nielsen, of the Univer

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