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Keep informed with news, articles and stories about all things related to children, young people and families.

UK Digital Poverty Alliance announces new funding to help support teachers

New funding for teachers from the Digital Poverty Alliance, Barclays Bank, Intel and the Learning Foundation has been announced to help tackle digital poverty. The campaign, Tech4Teachers, aims to provide 550 devices to teachers who do not have sufficient access to the internet, allowing teaching staff to give greater support to over 20,000 students across many disadvantaged communities. Alongside the devices, an online space will be made available for teachers who are a part of the…
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Children’s Mental Health Week

To mark this year’s 8th annual Children’s Mental Health Week, children’s counselling service charity, Place2Be, has joined forces with BAFTA Kids to produce two online assemblies for primary and secondary school audiences in the UK. Place2Be Ambassador Josh Smith speaks to various guests including Paralympic gold medallist Andy Lewis, actor Jacob Anderson and dancer Oti Mabuse, with a special message from Olivia Coleman in both assemblies. The theme ‘Growing Together’ was chosen to encourage children…
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New research strengthens link between the gut microbiome and behavioural development

New research suggests that there is a connection between gut health and behaviour development. 260 children took part in the study, with parents  providing gut health samples when their children were 6 weeks, 1 year and 2 years old. At 3 years parents completed a Behavioural Assessment System for Children to assess behavioural development. The research team recruited the 206 children from the New Hampshire Birth Cohort Study. The aim of this research was to…
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Genetics plays role in children’s academic success

In a UCL study of almost 40,000 pairs of parents and children, it was found that a child’s educational success depends on both the genes that they have inherited from their parents, as well as the genes they have not. Parents pass on traits through nature and nurture, leaving children with an intertwined mix of both; a child’s lifestyle can affect their grades. This concept is referred to as ‘genetic nurture’ in which parental genes…
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World Health Organisation calls on governments to stop sale of e-cigarettes to teens

The WHO is concerned that tobacco companies are luring in non-smokers with their vaping products, many of whom are underage. They argue that by strengthening legislation across the world, young people can be further protected from harm. The WHO is also concerned that vaping products are acting as an entry point into the world of cigarettes, which do contain tobacco. A new study found that young people who have vaped are more than twice as…
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Average age of first unsupervised play outside is increasing for British children

Results from a recent survey suggest that children in Britain are first playing outside unsupervised up to two years later than their parent’s generation. The British Children’s Play Survey spoke to over 1,900 parents of children aged five to eleven about their children’s time spent playing. The survey shows children are most likely to be aged eleven when they first play outside without adult supervision. On average their parents were aged nine for the same…
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Students who use smartphones late at night are more likely to be addicted to their device

Researchers from King’s College London have recently published findings on smartphone addiction amongst students. Focusing on the habits of 1,043 participants between ages 18 and 30, results show how phone use before bed can be a big indicator of who displays addictive tendencies and who does not. 42% of participants who used their phones before bed are said to display signs of addiction, compared to 23.8% of participants who refrained from such use 60 minutes…
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Studies show pre-term births has decreased in 2020

The number of mothers who have given birth pre-term (before 37 weeks) has decreased significantly this year. According to one evaluation, there were fewer babies born extremely early (prior to 28 weeks) during Denmark’s complete lockdown in the Spring compared to the last five years. A similar phenomenon happened in Ireland, where there was a 73% decrease in the number of premature babies born in the first 4 months of 2020. It is estimated that 15 million…
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New “marshmallow test” finds young children will delay gratification to impress others

A study has found that young children are better able to resist temptation and wait for greater rewards if they take into consideration the opinions of others. New research from the University of California at San Diego and Zhejiang Sci-Tech University conducted two experiments with 3 and 4 year olds in China in a new version of the classic “marshmallow test”. The children were given two options – receive one marshmallow immediately or wait and receive two….
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Lego to introduce paper bags as children call for removal of plastic

Letters from children asking Lego to remove single-use plastic bags has prompted the brand to replace its plastic packaging with paper bags. From 2021 Lego will introduce recyclable paper bags to package its loose bricks and will be investing up to $400m (£310m) over three years to improve its sustainability. This includes exploring alternative materials for the plastic Lego bricks themselves, such as bio-bricks which use sugar cane as a component. Lego Group chief executive…
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