Understanding Child Development

The speedy physical and psychological changes that children undergo from birth through adolescence often leave parents wondering how best to care for them at each stage. PT's experts weigh in on topics such how to talk so kids will listen, and when to back off and allow them to fail.

Recent posts on Child Development

Back to School is a Trusting Time

Trust needed for mountain climbing: 100%. Trust needed for most other tasks: a lot less than that.

Response to The School did Nothing to Stop the Bullying Lie

Juxtaposing the emergence of bullying as a contemporary social problem against the emergence of domestic violence as a social problem during the '60's & 70's is instructive.

How Schools (Sometimes) Fail Our Children

By Maureen D Healy on August 26, 2016 in Creative Development
Can your child's school improve in certain areas?

Clear Evidence: Spanking Harms Kids

A large body of research definitively shows that spanking has negative consequences for kids.

Serious Learning Happens at Summer Camp - Without Technology

For those ending a summer at camp, the transition back to home, school and screen time can be infused with lessons from June, July and August.

Easing a Child’s Summer to School Transition

School is right around the corner but your child is still sleeping until noon and moving in slow motion. Here are some suggestions to help get them ready for the new year.

Divorce an Unreliable Predictor of Aggressiveness

Even amongst a small fraction of children, severe aggression is rare.

To Bribe or Not to Bribe

Reading incentive programs, where students get points or prizes, and sometimes even grades, for reading “fun” books, are a ubiquitous feature of many literacy programs.

Professional Misunderstanding of Parental Alienation

Until professionals attain an in-depth understanding of the actual dynamics of parental alienation, cases of severe alienation will continue to be discounted.

Video Games Stronger Than Morphine: U.S. Military

The Military has discovered that playing video games can be more effective than morphine in treating combat burn veterans—but what is this digital morphine doing to kids' brains?

Two Minutes to Wapner

"If our son isn't doing what he wants, when he wants, than all bets are off." What to do when the problem is not "disobedience," but cognitive rigidity and anxiety.

Kids, Chimps, and Cooperation

By Art Markman Ph.D. on August 23, 2016 in Ulterior Motives
People are pretty good at sharing when they are cooperating. When does that ability develop? Is it uniquely human?

Big Pharma and the Question: Is ADHD Real?

By Claudia M Gold M.D. on August 23, 2016 in Child in Mind
Rather than assign blame for the ADHD epidemic, we must look to a new paradigm of mental health that is founded in contemporary developmental science.

Talking About the Past With Your Child Builds Resilience

By inviting, validating, helping and supporting your child to construct coherent narratives, you teach skills for regulating emotions and building resilience.
Carl Pickhardt Ph.D.

The Changing Reputation of Parents With Their Adolescent

It can be hard for parents to lose their positive reputation with the child to the more negative reputation with the adolescent.

Are Teachers Our Most Undervalued Leaders?

By Victor Lipman on August 21, 2016 in Mind of the Manager
Some HR executives like to hire teachers because they have outstanding communication and presentation skills – highly valued in the corporate world.

Politics, Values, and Youth Sports

With the political blitz on “values,” where do sports fit in?

When Your Child Is Diagnosed With ADHD

Back-to-school season is usually a relief. Yet, with 1 in 8 American school children (6.7 million kids in all) ending up with a diagnosis of ADHD, there is some cause for angst.

Alison Gopnik’s Advice to Parents: Stop Parenting!

By Peter Gray Ph.D. on August 19, 2016 in Freedom to Learn
Everything Professor Gopnik says in The Gardener and the Carpenter indicates that our schooling system is very very wrong. So why does she point her finger at parents, not schools?

Can You Learn a Second Language After Childhood?

By David Ludden Ph.D. on August 19, 2016 in Talking Apes
While it’s true that that it’s easier to learn a language when you’re young, adults can still learn languages with the right motivation.

Becoming Brilliant

By The Book Brigade on August 18, 2016 in The Author Speaks
In the push to make kids smart, you can spend $300 to count every word your kid hears. Or try to teach the fetus in the womb. But the best way is to change how you look at things.

When Sibling Rivalry Goes Awry

You may remember the days in the not so distant past when you were the envy of friends and family. “Your kids get along so well,” they would gush.

Back to School

By Janet Hicks Ph.D. on August 16, 2016 in Raising Parents
What can parents do to get children ready to go back to school?

Is Empty Nest a Myth?

By Susan Newman Ph.D. on August 16, 2016 in Singletons
Is sending your child off to college as emotionally draining and stressful as having a newborn or raising a child during the middle school years? What new research tells us.

Play Is Serious Business

By Darby Saxbe Ph.D. on August 15, 2016 in Home Base
We evolved to learn through play. But the push towards academics has crowded out open playtime in schools. Play should be treated not as a privilege, but as a core part of learning

To Parents of Children With Learning and Other Disabilities

In preparation for the school year, parents of children with disabilities should be aware of the resources available to them as well as what their child can expect at school.

What Goes Around Comes Around.... Only Sometimes

A blog post argues that "what goes around comes around" is based on a faulty premise about what parental alienation is.

Understanding Student Needs

Understanding and creating innovative ways to connect with students.

Indoctrinating Children

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on August 14, 2016 in How To Do Life
Cartoon movies start anti-male propaganda with the very young.

Celebrating Over One Million Views on Growing Friendships!

Growing Friendships blog on Psychology Today recently reached over one million views! Here's a look back at some favorite posts.