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Photo: MShev (Shutterstock) It’s a cliché to say very child is different, but it’s unquestionably true that different kids need different types or support and will thrive in different environments. A child with a laidback temperament might thrive in a traditional classroom setting, while one who is full of energy might be disruptive, and one struggling with social anxiety might find it all overwhelming. As it turns out, the interaction between a child’s temperament and their environment (whether at school or at home) plays an important role in shaping how they grow up. Child development experts call this the “goodness-of-fit” theory : a child who is well-suited to their environment will be able to deal with the demands and expectations it places on them. A poor fit can mean a child who is stressed out, and possibly acting out. Your child’s temperament interacts with their environment Along with their ability to regulate their emotions, a child’s natural temperament affects how they react to a given situation. Temperament includes traits such as their activity levels, their level of distractibility, how adaptable they are to new situations, as well as their sensitivity levels and overall mood. When the goodness-of-fit theory was first introduced in the 1970’s, it focused primarily on the interactions between parents and their children: Were the expectations and demands a parent placed on a child a match for that child’s temperament? But today, the same considerations are being given to other areas of a child’s life, including the […]