Natalie Nicholls: The Importance of Sleep for Learning

Monday, September 20, 2021 10:00 am
Reading Time: 2 minutes

The 4 Core Learning Fundamentals include Nutrition, Sleep, Exercise and Emotions. So Education Specialist Natalie Nicholls, joined Mike to talk about the importance of sleep for learning.Sleep

The Importance of Sleep

We are experiencing an epidemic of sleep deficiency. Research shows that we are sleeping 2 hours less per night than we were a century ago. This has an impact on every area of our lives including our learning ability. As adults we rely on things like coffee to help get us through the day. But kids don’t have the capacity to cope with tiredness, they might not even know they are tired.

What areas of the brain are impacted by sleep?

The prefrontal cortex is the area of the brain most affected by sleep deprivation. It influences planning, decision making, attention and reaction time. So if your child is tired, they may have difficulty paying attention in class. Memories are formed during the REM stage of our sleep cycle. If memory formation is disrupted by a lack of sleep, your child can struggle to retain what they learnt in class. It is important for children to be able to recall information after learning, especially in the early years when they are learning to read and write. But if we are tired it reduces the efficiency.

Natalie’s Tips for better sleep

  1.  Quantity of Sleep: Keep a log of your child’s sleep and compare it the number of hours recommend hours.
  2. Get the body clock right: Regulate their body clock by ensuring they go to bed at a consistent time. This will allow their body to naturally fall asleep at night. (This also means reducing technology use at night.)
  3. Quality: Rule out the possibility of sleep disorders such Sleep Apnea or Insomnia.

“The end result is amazing. They’ll have better school performance, better behaviour, more focused attention, better socials skills and they will be feeling so much better and happier with themselves.”

Do you have thoughts or questions? Let us know by texting or messaging us on socials. Listen to the full chat

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