The teenage years are an expanse of wonder and discovery.
Whether it’s the new experiences of school and friendship, or the sudden onset of hormones and teenage angst, this period of life can be a roller coaster ride for both parents and teens alike.
But beneath these tumultuous teen years lies a wealth of potential, creativity, and beauty. As parents, educators, and mentors, we must help unlock this potential by providing resources that nurture our teens’ innate curiosity and desire to explore their changing world.
In this blog post, we will explore ways to support our teens during these formative years via teenage brain lesson plans to unlock the hidden wonder within them.
Why understand the adolescent brain?
The beauty behind understanding the adolescent brain is that as parents or caregivers, we can understand our teens better. We’ll gain insight into their behavior and challenges, such as why they are more likely to experience anxiety and depression.
But more than that, a teen can also understand why they are reactive or feel themselves detaching from their parents.
Understanding the science behind these changes can help adults better support and guide teenagers through this crucial stage of development.
How does the adolescent brain work?
The teenage brain is a complex and ever-changing organ. It is constantly growing and evolving as the child matures. Here are some basics about how the adolescent brain works:
The prefrontal cortex
The teen brain is still developing. The prefrontal cortex, responsible for reasoning, decision-making, and self-control, is not fully mature until the mid – late 20s. This explains why teenagers are more likely to take risks and make impulsive decisions.
The release of dopamine
The adolescent brain is more sensitive to rewards. The release of dopamine, a neurotransmitter that helps regulate pleasure and motivation, is heightened during adolescence. This makes teenagers more prone to seek out activities that are pleasurable or exciting.
The teen brain is more emotional. The amygdala, which controls fear and other emotions, matures faster than the prefrontal cortex during puberty. This can lead to mood swings and impulsive behavior.
The production of melatonin
The teenage brain needs more sleep. The production of melatonin, a hormone that regulates sleep, is delayed during adolescence. This means that teenagers tend to stay up later at night and have difficulty waking up in the morning.
The Myelin sheath on the neuron axon
Information processing speeds up as myelination escalates during the teenage years. What this means is that the teen’s ability to process information is at it’s peak and the fastest brains on the planet. Watch a teen scroll through social media and you can see the warp speed processing.
The challenges of adolescence
Adolescence can be confusing and overwhelming for teens and their parents.
On the one hand, teenagers are becoming more independent and are starting to think more abstractly. On the other hand, they are still emotionally immature and often lack the experience to deal with challenging situations.
Being aware of the maturing differences of the teen brain can help us identify and celebrate the intentional stage the brain is in and offer support. One of these ways is teenage brain lesson plans.
What are teenage brain lesson plans?
These are designed to take advantage of the unique way the adolescent brain learns. By using activities and exercises specifically tailored to the way the teenage brain works, we can help students learn more effectively.
Benefits of using teen brain lesson plans
- It can help students better understand how their brains work and how they can optimize their learning.
- These lessons can also help students develop important executive functioning skills, such as time management and organization.
- Teen brain lesson plans promote student engagement by providing hands-on and experiential learning opportunities.
- These lessons help build strong connections between what students learn in school and the real world.
Examples of brain curriculums
There are many different types of curriculums for teen brain lesson plans. Some examples include:
Social and emotional learning
This curriculum focuses on helping teenagers develop the skills to manage their emotions, set goals, and resolve conflicts. It also teaches them how to relate to others positively.
Executive function training
This kind of curriculum helps teenagers learn how to plan ahead, stay organized, and make decisions. It also teaches them how to control their impulses and delay gratification.
This curriculum helps teenagers become more aware of their thoughts and feelings and learn how to control them. It also teaches them to focus and be present in the moment.
Academic success strategies
This curriculum helps teenagers learn study techniques that will help them succeed in school. It also teaches them how to manage their time, set priorities, and stay motivated.
Implementing a teenage brain lesson plan
You’re probably asking yourself, where can you find such a teen brain lesson plan, or how can you create one?
There is a very simple solution. LEVEL UP!
The beauty behind the LEVEL UP program is the experiential lesson plans. These rely on audio, visual, and kinesthetic cues through team, cooperation, games, crafts, discussion, journaling, and all sorts of activities to cement a principal or skill using multiple senses.
The LEVEL UP program is designed to meet the brain at the teen’s current developmental level by delivering a curriculum and tools using sight, hearing, touch, smell, taste, and imagination. It’s specifically created to use all your teen’s senses to instill life skills within them.
How does the LEVEL UP program work with your adolescent child?
“We cannot solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them.”
LEVEL UP teaches children that empowerment is about controlling thoughts, feelings, beliefs, and actions. This program provides kids with skills to control those things and learn more effectively.
We must be in a higher emotional state to have the clarity and higher brain functionality needed to problem-solve, be more analytical, and help the brain create new neural networks. LEVEL UP teaches these tactics.
Through this teen brain lesson plan, teens learn about the neural system and the connection between the brain and body, empowering them to understand how they receive and keep information. Most importantly, it teaches them how to eliminate what is not serving them well, such as processing and transmuting harmful past experiences.
LEVEL UP in a nutshell
The LEVEL UP program really is a journey.
- Your child starts on the bottom level to understand and claim ownership over their behavior by understanding how the mind and the body work and how the influencers of the world know this information.
- They then level up, stepping into the empowerment skills, which shows them how they aren’t powerless and where they do have control.
Finally, they level up to awaken their ability to create a blueprint for their life.
- Learning about the brain and the body is one thing, but applying skills that create momentum and change is empowering.
- Transformation can be exciting and engaging with a curriculum that is fun, enlightening and written in the language that the teen and the teen in all of us can understand and apply.