Our research has shown that students who have not had this taken into account are frequently disruptive, miserable, disheartened, with poor literacy and they ‘hate school’, leaving as early as possible. Poor educational achievement is the strongest risk factor for life-long problems particularly early pregnancy, drug use, trouble with the law, homelessness and mental health issues.
Our research also shows that when this aspect of development is taken into account by teaching literacy skills in the early years of school; and in later years giving strategies for sequencing information, teaching basic information that was missed, and communicating appropriately in the classroom: students appear to concentrate better, understand what they are meant to be doing, are able to achieve literacy skills and disruptive behavior improves. Furthermore, boys in particular begin to re-engage in learning. Not taking this aspect of development into account, is like telling a child who has poor vision to ‘look harder’ in order to see. For example, telling a child who can only recall short sentences to ‘listen harder’ when we quickly give them 10-digit phone number, without repeating it or ‘chunking it’ with pauses, is therefore just as impolite.