It’s no secret that high-achieving kids in competitive environments put themselves under extreme pressure to succeed. In Silicon Valley’s Palo Alto school district, since just October of last year, four students have taken their own lives. But Frank Bruni, in this editorial, argues that extremely high expectations often have a subtler, more insidious effect on young people: kids under pressure just don’t get enough sleep. Whether they’re revved up from Adderall or just racked with anxiety, teenagers suffer from lack of rest, which impedes growth, sanity and physical health. He shares the absurdity of one school’s need to bring in a team of sleep specialists, even challenging kids to come up with an inspirational slogan (“Life is lousy when you’re drowsy”). So how do you help your kids to get the rest they need? Experts suggest some simple strategies, such as limiting screen time after dark, matching mental exertion with physical, and encouraging bedtime rituals such as a hot bath or cup of cocoa. Do you think kids are getting less sleep than they used to? What are some ways to highlight the importance of rest to a population who wants to burn the candle at both ends? Share your thoughts in the comments.
Why Today's Superkids Are Just Plain Exhausted
April 26, 2017