5 tips on talking to kids about scary news
July 20th, 2012
02:06 PM ET

5 tips on talking to kids about scary news

By Sasha Emmons, Parenting.com

(Parenting.com) - With tragic story of a mass shooting in Colorado flashing on the news this morning, parents may find themselves awkwardly fielding questions from their kids. How do you explain that scary events do occur while still making your children feel safe?

We talked to Dr. Paul Coleman, author of How to Say It to Your Child When Bad Things Happen, to find out the best ways to talk to kids about disturbing images and events.

Wait until they're older. Until around age 7, Dr. Coleman suggests only addressing the tough stuff if kids bring it up first. "They might see it on TV or hear about it at school (or heaven forbid even witness it), and then you have to deal with it. But younger children might not be able to handle it well," says Dr. Coleman.

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Keep it black and white. Yes, the world can be a cruel place, but little kids, well, can't handle the truth."Younger kids need to be reassured that this isn't happening to them and won't happen to them," says Dr. Coleman. Parents may feel like they're lying, since no one can ever be 100% sure of what the future holds, but probability estimates are not something small kids can grasp, and won't comfort them.

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My View: 10 reasons the SAT matters
July 20th, 2012
06:22 AM ET

My View: 10 reasons the SAT matters

Courtesy The College BoardBy Kathryn Juric, Special to CNN

Editor’s note: Kathryn Juric is vice president of the College Board’s SAT Program.  She leads global program strategy for the SAT, which is administered annually to nearly 3 million students worldwide.

The College Board created the SAT to democratize access to higher education by providing an objective measure for evaluating a student’s college readiness.  This function has endured for more than 80 years and for those who doubt its value, here are 10 reasons why the SAT continues to be an integral part of the college admission process:

1. The SAT has a proven track record as a fair and valid predictor of first-year college success for all students, regardless of gender, race, or socio-economic status.  The most recent validity study utilizing data from more than 150,000 students at more than 100 colleges and universities demonstrates that the combined use of SAT and high school GPA is a better predictor of college success than HSGPA alone.

2. The SAT gives students the opportunity to demonstrate their college-preparedness despite inconsistent grading systems throughout the nation’s high schools.  And SAT scores provide a national, standardized benchmark that neutralizes the risk of grade inflation.

3. The SAT tests students’ ability to apply what they have learned in high school and to problem-solve based on that knowledge – skills that are critical to success in college and the workforce.  The College Board conducts regular curriculum surveys to ensure the content tested on the SAT reflects the content being taught in the nation’s high school classrooms.

4. Despite what some testing critics have said, colleges still depend on college entrance exams as part of the admission process.  According to a 2010 survey published by the National Association of College Admission Counseling, admissions officers ranked college entrance exam scores as the third-most important factor in the admission process – behind only grades in college prep courses and the strength of the student’s high school curriculum.

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Filed under: College • Issues • Testing • Voices