Parenting for the science-minded
Founded by a biological anthropologist (me), Parenting Science is dedicated to families who want information based on the scientific evidence.
It’s also dedicated to people who are interested in the big picture: Parenting and child development from the perspectives of anthropology, evolution, psychology, and neuroscience.
No folk theories. No preachy advice. No authoritarian pronouncements or pseudoscientific political dogma.
Instead, you’ll find something pretty rare among popular resources for parents:
In-depth analysis with fully referenced citations from the scientific and medical literature.
I’ve got opinions. But who cares? What’s really important is critical thinking. Parents deserve to be treated like intelligent, rational beings.
You may be a scientist, physician, or teacher. Maybe you’re an educated, skeptical layperson who loves science.
Whatever the case, you don’t need dogma. You need evidence. You can draw your own conclusions.
So welcome to the site, and please visit again. I will continue to add new articles over time. Know anyone who might find these pages useful? Help me spread the word.
Thank you for your support!
Gwen Dewar, Ph.D.
- The Parenting Science Book Shop
- Recommended readings, hand-picked by Gwen Dewar and sold by Amazon.com. Your purchases will help support the Parenting Science website.
- Search Parenting Science
- Can't find it? Use the search engine on ParentingScience.com.
- The Parenting Science News Feed
- The Parenting Science news feed keeps you up-to-date on the latest articles added to ParentingScience.com. Subscribe here.
- Baby development and parenting for the science-minded
- Evidence based information about baby development, including baby cognition, sleep, language, feeding, and more.
- Breastfeeding tips and topics for the science-minded
- Breastfeeding tips and articles based on the anthropological, evolutionary, and clinical evidence. Information on newborns, older babies, and the composition of your breast milk
- Infant crying in anthropological perspective: How parents matter
- Can you prevent infant crying by changing your approach to baby care? Maybe...and maybe not. Read about baby soothing techniques, smoke and alcohol, hunter-gatherers, and more.
- Baby sleep tips: A guide for the science-minded parent
- Baby sleep tips and articles about newborn sleep, baby sleep patterns, and baby sleep problems. Reviews baby sleep aids and sleep training programs. Anthropological and evolutionary perspectives.
- Baby food secrets: Evidence-based tips for getting babies eat right
- Does a funny face mean that baby hates her food? Will fruit ruin her appetite for vegetables? Read the latest research about baby food.
- Bullying in school, at home, and on the savanna
- The Parenting Science guide to bullies: What they do, why they do it, and how we can stop bullying in school and elsewhere.
- Teaching self-control: Evidence-based tips
- Self-control is the key to success. Can we help kids regulate themselves? Develop better self-discipline? Check out these evidence-based tips for teaching self-control.
- Social cognition and people skills: A parent's evidence-based guide
- What's normal social behavior? And how can parents help their kids develop strong social skills? Check out this evidence-based guide to social cognition.
- Neuroimaging and your child's brain: A guide for the science-minded
- Neuroimaging promises to teach us a lot about the brain. But it's not the last word--or the most scientific approach--to learning about your child's mind.
- Intelligence in children: Can we make our kids smarter?
- Can you boost your child's intelligence? A guide for the science-minded parent.
- Music and intelligence
- Why is there a link between music and intelligence? Cutting-edge science reveals how music shapes the brain.
- Evidence-based education: School topics for the science-minded
- When should kids begin formal schooling? What works? The Parenting Science guide to evidence-based education.
- Science for kids: How to raise a science-minded child
- An evidence-based guide to science for kids: How foster scientific thinking and a love for the natural world.
- Empathy in children and teens: A guide for the science-minded
- hat do studies tells us about empathy in children and teens? Check out this guide to brains, babies, teens, media influences, parenting tactics, and more.
- Food and nutrition for kids: An evidence-based guide
- What does evolution have to do with nutrition for kids? The parenting science guide to picky eaters, carbohydrates, nutrients, probiotics, and more.
- The science of attachment parenting
- What scientific studies reveal about attachment parenting.
- Parenting styles: A guide for the science-minded
- What does research tell us about the four basic parenting styles? Identify your style, review the evidence, and consider the role of culture, peers, and child temperament.
- Preschool math lessons: A developmental guide for the science-minded parent
- A developmental guide to preschool math lessons for the science-minded parent.
- Preschool science activities
- Preschool science activities and scienced-based tips on how to teach science to young children.
- Preschool Social Skills
- How to nurture and improve preschool social skills. Science-based tips on teaching social competence.
- Sleep tips and topics for the science-minded parent
- Evidence-based sleep tips and articles for the thinking parent. Based on the latest research in sleep science, pediatrics, and anthropology.
- Family stress: An evidence based guide to stress in parents and children
- Evidence-based articles about family stress
- Bed-wetting in children: A guide for the science-minded parent
- Bed-wetting is a surprisingly common problem. Are there effective therapies?
- Potty training tips: Evidence-based information for the thinking parent
- Does it matter when your child starts toilet training? Are some methods better than others? See these evidence-based potty training tips.
- Educational games for kids
- The Parenting Science guide to developmental toys and educational games for kids.
- The effects of video games: A guide for the science-minded
- What are the effects of video games on children? A collection of articles and resources about the research on video games.
- Contact information
- Contact info for ParentingScience.com
- Evidence based parenting: Links for the science-minded
- It's not easy to find parenting information that meets minimum standards of scientific rigor. Here are some sites that, like Parenting Science, provide analysis of the published data.
Praise for Parenting Science
"[A] welcome antidote to the opinion dressed up as science that parents are constantly fed. Tear up your parenting books and get yourselves over there..."
- Charles Fernyhough, Ph.D., developmental psychologist and author of A Thousand Days of Wonder: A Scientist’s Chronicle of his Daughter’s Developing Mind
"...[O]ne of the most awesome websites I’ve seen in a long time…In addition to being helpful to academic parents, I see this site being useful in anthropology courses on human sexuality, life history, parenting, evolutionary medicine, evolutionary psychology, etc. Please check it out!"
- Julienne Rutherford, Ph.D., University of Illinois biological anthropologist and founder of the Biological Anthropology Developing Investigators Troop (BANDIT)
"I came across a great website run by Gwen Dewar, one I wish it had been available to me when my children were young. I hope everyone interested in math and kids will look at In search of the smart preschool board game and other pages on this site."
- Bill Marsh, Ph.D., in mathematics and author of MathInking, a blog about teaching math
"Gwen Dewar, a Ph.D. in biological anthropology, analyzes the latest research about parenting and kids. Check it out. You might even learn something about evolutionary psychology, or brain chemistry, or stereotyping."
- Polly Palumbo, Ph.D., psychologist and author of the blog, Momma Data: Children’s Healthy in the Media