NorthStar Academy
Charting a Clear Course for Teens & Their Families

The Adolescent Brain

A Work in Progress


Development & Growth



Adolescence is a period of rapid brain development, similar to that seen in infants and toddlers. Research has now clearly demonstrated that brain development is not complete until an individual is in their mid-twenties. So, just as parents create learning environments for very young children, it is also possible to create the most optimal growth environment for the developing teenage brain. And these experiences, and the environments in which they occur influence the way neuro-pathways are formed.

The Positive Youth Development model establishes a framework within which NorthStar Academy can provide a therapeutic environment that is most conducive to healthy growth and development. By shaping a student’s environment and experiences using the latest research information available, we believe that we are contributing to brain and cognitive development that will help students use rational decision making strategies, learn to respond rather than react, and support them in internalizing a personal value system to guide their actions. We meet teens where they are, help them identify the strengths they have while addressing the challenges of adolescence.