Articles by Ellen Braaten, Co-Director

Ellen Braaten, Ph.D. is co-director of The MGH Clay Center for Young Healthy Minds, and director of the Learning and Emotional Assessment Program (LEAP) at Massachusetts General Hospital. She is also an associate professor of psychology at Harvard Medical School. She is co-author of the book Bright Kids Who Can’t Keep Up, which was released in August 2014.

 To learn more about Ellen, or to contact her directly, please see Our Team.

Growing Up With a Sibling With a Disability

June 25, 2018

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“You don’t understand, Mom!” I said.  “They were making fun of him! They were imitating his speech and laughing!”

My mom shrugged.  It would take more than a couple of small-town high school punks to get her attention.

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Shrinking It Down: When Nightmares Become Reality in the U.S. (Special Episode)

June 22, 2018

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In research that’s been done about kids’ fears, the most frightening thing is losing or being left without a parent.

Through the events at the U.S. southern border in the last weeks, we have watched migrant children live out their worst nightmares in the most deliberately traumatic way.

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Generalized Anxiety Disorder

May 22, 2018

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Ten-year-old Joyce was always known as a bit of worrier. Even as a two-year-old, she seemed anxious from time-to-time, especially when life was a bit stressful. A new babysitter, a noisy birthday party, or a vacation could all trigger nervousness and crying spells, but these symptoms generally went away fairly quickly.

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What is ADHD?

April 13, 2018

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One of The Clay Center’s our biggest partners related to child and adolescent health is the MassGeneral Hospital for Children (MGHfC), which provides treatment and services for children of all ages in virtually every specialty and subspecialty of medicine and surgery, as well as preventive and primary care.

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What is Dyslexia?

April 13, 2018

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One of The Clay Center’s our biggest partners related to child and adolescent health is the MassGeneral Hospital for Children (MGHfC), which provides treatment and services for children of all ages in virtually every specialty and subspecialty of medicine and surgery, as well as preventive and primary care.

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What is a Disorder of Written Expression?

March 27, 2018

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Paul was a frustrated 6th grader. He had always thought of himself as smart – and in fact was the best reader in his class. But when it came time to write about what he’d read, he fell apart. First, it was difficult for him to organize his thoughts.

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What is a Math Disorder?

February 20, 2018

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Brenda was a typical sixth grader in every way but one: she faced incredible difficulty in math class.  She was a very good reader and writer, and in fact a very good student in every way – except when she entered Mr. Barnard’s classroom.

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Growing Together in the New Year

January 29, 2018

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The beginning of 2018 is now in our rear-view mirror and if you’re like most people, you’ve likely already broken your New Year’s Resolution.  In fact, less than half of people who make New Year’s resolutions stick with them much past June.

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Processing Speed in Social Relationships

December 18, 2017

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Processing speed is the time it takes us to perform a certain task in a certain amount of time.  Some kids are naturally fast.  They run, talk, draw, and do all sorts of things at a rate that seems appropriate for their age.  Kids with slower processing need more time to process that same information.

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Dyslexia 102: Understanding Treatment

November 28, 2017

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This blog is the second in a series on dyslexia. Topics to be addressed further in include accommodation options available, and the transition of a child to life, school, etc. following diagnosis.

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