Essential Reads

Relationships Cause Conduct Disorder, Not "Bad Seeds"

No genes or group of genes dictate specific behaviors

Is Coding Camp a Good Thing? Answer: Not to Me

Should kids be spending their summers in front of a screen?

5 Tips for the Parents of Teens Who Make Rudeness an Art

What can parents do to encourage respect and courtesy in their teens?

5 Tips for Taming Overly Wired and Overly Rude Teens

How do you handle teens who take rudeness to a new level?

Recent Posts on Child Development

Why Working Mothers Shouldn’t Feel Guilty

What do people really think about working mothers?

After Divorce: Ten Principles for Parenting

Divorce can disrupt a child’s life and development, but the basic principles of good parenting hold true through the challenges. Current research shows that most children are beginning to function reasonably well within two years after their parents' divorce. Some kids even benefit, especially those whose pre-divorce family included fear, chaos, unpredictability, or abuse.

Relationships Cause Conduct Disorder, Not "Bad Seeds"

To paraphrase a certain politician, it's the relationships, stupid! In order to avoid looking at their own or their family's behavior, both parents and professionals seem to want to think that children can be born as "bad seeds." However, human genes do not work that specifically. It is not toxic people that create most dysfunctional families, but toxic relationships.

Advanced Placement Classes Under the Microscope

By APA Division 15 on July 07, 2015 in PsychEd
Last spring, over 4 million high school students took more than 2 million Advanced Placement (AP) tests. According to the College Board, students in AP courses learn more material, are more prepared for college, and finish a bachelor’s degree earlier than non-AP students. But, what is the real impact of AP programs?

Is Coding Camp a Good Thing? Answer: Not to Me

By Jim Taylor Ph.D. on July 07, 2015 in The Power of Prime
One of the booming trends in the 'youth-achievement-industrial complex' is computer coding camps (and after-school coding programs). I think this trend is driven by economic uncertainty that has created immense anxiety in parents for their children's futures. Also, a hyper-achievement culture in which parents feel compelled to 'keep up with the Joneses'.

Surviving the Family Car Trip

Before you tell a child to sit still, stop annoying everyone, or threaten to leave him on the side of the road if he doesn’t stop asking questions, try offering another source of stimulation. Give the child a meaningful role like navigator or ice cream finder and see if bad behavior doesn't change into something more socially desirable.

Women’s World Cup Win: Contributions to Tween Self-Esteem

Each of these players tells a unique story. What bonds them all together is their love of soccer and their desire to be the best. Role models such as the USA Women’s National Soccer team are important for our tweens and teens. Their accomplishments as individuals, and of course, their victory as a team model important lessons.

First in Mass Violence, Last in Paid Maternity Leave

By Claudia M Gold M.D. on July 06, 2015 in Child in Mind
When we offer time and space to listen to young families who struggle, we can help set development on a healthy path. If our country placed more value on children and families, would we see a decline in mass violence?

What My Children Teach Me About How to Live Well

What my children have taught me is that it is better to be a human being than a human doing.

Some Medications May Alter Childhood Brain Development

Medications that disrupt REM sleep may alter brain structure during critical phases of child development.

Top Teen Driving Distractions

Memorial Day through Labor Day marks the "100 deadliest days" for young drivers. What you need to know before you hand over the keys to your teen.

New York Times Best Seller Hoping to Bring More Awareness

By Judy L. Mandel on July 04, 2015 in Replacement Child
NY Times Best Seller Hoping to Bring More Awareness to Replacement Children

Raising Kids Who Love Reading & Devour Books Voraciously.

By Suzanne Gelb Ph.D., J.D. on July 04, 2015 in All Grown Up
Tips for raising kids who love reading, devour books voraciously, and practically beg for a trip to the library. Ready to ignite a lifelong love affair with books? Here are 5 questions that can help you to light the first spark:

Parenting Without Punishment: A Humanist Perspective, Part 3

Tragically, since recorded history corporal punishment has been the “default” system for disciplining children. In the past century, however, evidence demonstrating its ineffectiveness has mounted to the degree that it can no longer—whether ethically or pragmatically—be justified. It’s therefore regrettable that today it's still common in the U.S.

You Are Your Child’s “First Verb”

"First Verb Parenting" sees parents as a “child’s first verb”---loving action figures giving meaning, direction, guidance, and linking---to children, their attentive subjects.

Are You A Strengths-Based Parent?

When it comes to parenting your kids do you spend most of your time pointing out what they’re doing wrong or what they’re doing right? If you’re like most time poor parents the chances are you’re quicker at identifying the things your kids need to improve upon, but is this the best way to raise kids who are resilient and able to cope with stress?

Feelings: How and What Does a Baby Understand?

The three pillars of development: Feelings (affects), language, and cognition.

"Bullying Fiction" Top Picks

Adolescence. At times synonymous with daily dramas…. until she takes her own life or he brings a gun to school—and uses it. This blog contains a list of books, fictional and/or autobiographical, that speak to these tragic scenarios, as well as to dysfunctional behaviors (including cutting and eating disorders) that are often linked to bullying.

The Golden Ages of Television

As the baby boomer generation moves increasingly into old age, it is gratifying and inspiring to see older actors performing on television into their eighties – and beyond.

5 Tips for the Parents of Teens Who Make Rudeness an Art

The topic of teens' social behaviors never seem to lose their popularity, but many recent reports suggest that teen rudeness is increasing. What can parents do to bring their adolescents' behavior back in line?

Do Boys Need Rough and Tumble Play?

Why do boys wrestle and play pretend fighting? Do all boys do this? Should we view it as violence or innocent fun?

5 Tips for Taming Overly Wired and Overly Rude Teens

Rude teenagers may be simply practicing the skills their parents have allowed to take root. If a child grows up interacting in a private, virtual world more often than interacting one-on-one with family, a whole slew of social skills and social learning will be missed.

Siblings Are the Awesomest: Children Talk About Siblings

I figured if Piaget was able to develop entire theories and write countless books on cognitive development based on observations of his own children, I can at least write one article using the perspectives of my own offspring.

Why Are People with Disabilities the Targets of Violence?

Why do offenders target people with disabilities? Are there links between types of disability and type of victimization? The Data Doctor answers a question from the aunt of a former student.

Coping with Adversity from "Inside Out"

This film effectively and hilariously shines a light on the inner workings of our emotional brains and why we struggle at times. Most powerfully, its metaphor of "Emotions at Your Central Control Panel" offers a useful way to reflect on our own feelings and how they can push us to react, sometimes to our disadvantage. Required viewing for anyone operating a human brain.

Beyond the Toddler Years

We are continuing our exploration of the three pillars of human development--Affects (Feelings), Language, and Cognition. This month we wrap up the section of Language by examining the link between feelings and words, a process we call translation.

Sentimental Journey

By Susan Hooper on June 30, 2015 in Detours and Tangents
Summer vacations in my childhood meant annual visits to my parents’ families in New England. This summer I returned to my mother’s Vermont hometown for the first time in decades. I found people and places there that reminded me happily of my mother, her family and my own youth.

Play Makes Children Smart, Happy and Prepared for the Future

This blog is about the myriad benefits of play for children. Too much cerebral focus and too little spontaneous thought can be damaging for creativity, intellect and overall wellbeing.

How Does Scent Drive Human Behavior?

Researchers have identified how specific scents can motivate your decision making.

How Does Your Child Sleep?

Having difficulty getting your child to bed down in the evenings? Check out this new book for frazzled families.