Why Do Kids Struggle in School?Jul 31, 2022 05:10PM ● By Lisa Childs
If a child finds school easy, they will just jump in and do the work. Yet how many kids struggle in school? How many kids hate school? Why do they struggle?
Stress has been on the rise for decades. Instances of brain malfunctions and brain-centered disabilities of all kinds are also on the rise. Children’s developing brains are especially vulnerable to stress. The stress called trauma is when someone experiences a circumstance that causes their body to respond in a “fight or flight” manner, whether child or adult. The trauma may be big or small, however, the reaction is individual. For example, one child may love a new sibling; for another, it can be traumatic. When the brain and nervous system feels this traumatic reaction, it may not fully recover, which can lead to learning difficulties and/or behavioral changes that may not present at that time. Instead, the effects of the struggle may present itself when the child goes to school and needs brain functions that are blocked. Difficulties in learning, communication, cognitive, and/or coordination become noticeable. Additionally, nervous system and limbic systems dysfunction may lead to emotional and behavioral struggles. Some of the more common difficulties are ADD, ADHD, dyslexia, autism-spectrum disorders, anxiety, depression, or addiction. Some children only struggle with certain classes, and this leads to more emotional stress.
To understand a little about the brain: There are two main, separate but complementary types of processing function: gestalt, often thought of as right brain function, and logic. Brain tasks require access to numerous brain areas and some need integration between both main functions, often simultaneously. Blockages make processing slow or impossible; a child can take a long time to answer or give up entirely. Think of a child with those blocks: watching the teacher walk around the classroom, looking up at the chalkboard, looking down at their papers, trying to write while also being distracted by all the noise. For some kids, they can barely keep up if at all. It is not because they don’t try hard enough or are lazy or anything else— it is because their brain is blocked from doing the task. For example, some kids are artistic, but struggle with math or visa versa. Some kids can be good at both but have poor reading comprehension, as the two sides of their brain are not working together. Both gestalt and logic functions are needed. When someone has access to all their brain functions and pathways, they can jump in and do the task at hand.
What about emotional issues? Emotional intensity and loss of some brain function from a traumatic event can be completely normal. When a loved one dies, the person is going to be hurting and that will take time, even years, to get to a more balanced state. If you cut your finger, the healing of the wound will also take time. However, when our brain is chronically not fully functional and our limbic system and nervous system are under or overactive, we can be stuck in emotional cycles, making life hard to handle. Time does not help. We stare at a screen or a piece of paper, frozen. How does one get unstuck? By calming the nervous system and balancing the limbic system for starters. When the emotional intensity is balanced, then logic will be more available and life’s tasks are much easier.
What can be done? Candida overgrowth can cause brain fog and is usually caused by eating too much sugar. Sugar reduces immune function and brain function. First, the diet must be cleaned up. Check the environment for other clues—there might be too much screen time or EMFs that also affect the brain and sleep. Studies suggest that not getting enough sleep may be as risky as drinking. Certain toxins may require detoxification. The nervous system and limbic must be balanced. The brain functions and pathways need to be balanced and re-wired. Logic steps in so fears can be overcome and tasks such as algebra can be done. Pathways must be re-activated. The two sides of the brain must work together via re-wiring the corpus callosum. Equilibrium can be restored by balancing the vestibular system. Eyes and ears need to be working together as well. And so on.
All these steps are crucial to restore brain processing, enable learning, and free oneself from patterns and places that keep us stuck.
Lisa Childs, BASW, spent years in social work focused on helping those affected by child abuse and neglect, autistic children and adults, emotionally challenged teens and more. She is Certified in Crossinology® Integration Technique, Applied Physiology, Advanced Brain Integration and Muscle Re-activation. Currently, she practices BIT at Well of Life Center in Doylestown.
Location: 201 Farm Lane, Doylestown, PA. For information, call 215-340-3930 or visit WellOfLifeCenter.com. See ad, page 9.
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