I recently had the unique opportunity to meet with a group of University of Rochester scientists who offered our students a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to participate in a cutting-edge brain development and child health research project. The nationwide project is called the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development, ABCD, Study.
The University of Rochester will join scientists across the nation in this endeavor, the largest of its kind, which “will help us understand how childhood experiences like sports, video games, social media, unhealthy sleep patterns, etc...affect our children’s brain development and a variety of social, behavioral and health outcomes.” How can you help? The University of Rochester is inviting Webster CSD families with children, boys and girls, in good health between the ages of 9 and 10 years old to enroll in the study that will include more than 10,000 children nationwide.
Interested families must be willing to travel one to two times a year to the University of Rochester where children will be asked to play games and puzzles on an iPad, answer questions regarding hobbies, sleep patterns, friendships, school, etc. — and whatever else they would like to share with researchers — and have a non-invasive brain MRI. It’s also important to note that the ABCD Study is safe and doesn’t involve any X-rays or medications. The study will follow children over a period of about 10 years to document the many critical changes their brains go through over this period of time and how those experiences shape who these children will become as adults. Families will be compensated for their time and participation in this study that has the potential to benefit current and future generations.
As a former biology teacher — and still a teacher at heart — with a keen interest in neuroscience — particularly as it relates to the mindfulness work we are currently doing with all students district-wide — I am excited about what this study could mean for our kids and our kids’ kids. This could be a game-changer in brain development and neuroscience studies, one in which I’m hoping you will consider participating.
For more information on the ABCD Study, please visit ABCDStudy.org. You may also contact the University of Rochester directly at abcd@urmc.rochester.edu or by calling (585) 275-2546 if your child(ren) would like to participate. Thanks in advance for your consideration.