"Fine": The usual reply from kids about the first day of school

It’s been a long time since the day after Labour Day meant the first day of school for me. A loooongggg time. And yet…today still leaves a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach. I’m sure many of you feel the same way. That first day of school can be stressful not just for students, but for parents as well. Today in The Conversation Canada, Jessica Cooke and Sheri Madigan of the University of Calgary offer parents some advice on how to talk to their kids about their school day – including how to avoid one-word answers. (“How was your day at school?” “Fine.”)

That’s not the only back-to-school special on tap for today: we also look at the special challenge for educators who deal with children who face trauma on the home front. There’s also an insightful analysis of the true cost to companies that face sexual harassment in the workplace and how Canada could take a leading role in slowing down the renewed nuclear arms race.

Returning to school isn’t the only big event in September. This month is also when the Toronto International Film Festival is held. TIFF has become one of the biggest film festivals in the world – even though people’s movie-viewing habits have changed dramatically over the last few years. Diane Burgess of the University of British Columbia writes about how the giant streaming services like Netflix have impacted Canadian feature films.


Scott White


Today's Featured Articles

Parental communication can buffer against low self-esteem and poor academic achievement. (Shutterstock)

How to get kids talking about their school day

Jessica Cooke, University of Calgary; Sheri Madigan, University of Calgary

Children's needs change as they grow and develop, so parents should attune themselves to talking to their children in age-appropriate ways that demonstrate ongoing care.

A trauma-informed lens asks people to shift from thinking ‘What is wrong?“ to 'What happened?” (Shutterstock)

Trauma-informed classrooms can better support kids in care

Melanie D. Janzen, University of Manitoba; Dawn Sutherland, University of Manitoba; Kathryn Levine, University of Manitoba

In some Manitoba schools, educators are working to recognize that the most urgent need for children who have experienced trauma is to establish the child's sense of safety in the school.


The real cost of workplace sexual harassment to businesses

Shiu-Yik Au, University of Manitoba

The paper "Me Too: Does Workplace Sexual Harassment Hurt Firm Value?" shows that firms with high levels of sexual harassment decline in value.

A nuclear arms race could have devastating effects, and working towards nuclear disarmament is becoming more urgent. Shutterstock

Canada could slow the accelerating nuclear arms race

MV Ramana, University of British Columbia; Lauren J. Borja, University of British Columbia

The recent nuclear explosions in Russia serve as a reminder of the threat that nuclear weapons pose. Canada is uniquely situated to work toward the elimination of nuclear weapons globally.

The feature ‘Once Were Brothers’ is the first time a Canadian documentary opens TIFF. The film follows Robbie Robertson from his early life in Toronto and on the Six Nations of the Grand River reserve to the creation of legendary roots-rock group The Band. Courtesy of TIFF

TIFF: Netflix and streaming means Canadian feature films struggle to find audiences

Diane Burgess, University of British Columbia

Even though a Netflix produced film has become the first ever Canadian documentary to open TIFF, the streaming service raises new challenges for filmmakers looking for domestic audiences.

La Conversation Canada

C’est un choc pour les vieilles générations de s’apercevoir que certains jeunes sont incapables de lire une note écrite à la main. Shutterstock

Voici pourquoi il faut réintroduire l’écriture cursive à l’école

Hetty Roessingh, University of Calgary

Développer sa maîtrise de l’écriture manuscrite, de façon à ce qu’elle devienne automatique, joue un rôle important dans la littératie.


Health + Medicine

  • How poor diet can can lead to blindness

    Denize Atan, University of Bristol

    Most people know that a poor diet can lead to heart disease, diabetes and even cancer. Few are aware that it can also cause blindness.

Science + Technology

  • First fossil trails of baby sea turtles found in South Africa

    Charles Helm, Nelson Mandela University; Martin Lockley, University of Colorado Denver

    These trackways preserve an incredibly brief moment in time. More importantly, they tell us about ancient climates, and how turtle breeding ranges have changed over the millenia