The Parenting Science News Feed

The Parenting Science news feed alerts you to updates on the Parenting Science website and to new blog posts or articles written by Gwen Dewar about parenting and child development topics.

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Apr 14, 2021

ADHD in children: What you should know about diagnosis & overdiagnosis

What is attention deficit hyperactivity disorder? How is it diagnosed, and why is diagnosis on the rise? An evidence-based guide to ADHD in children.

Continue reading "ADHD in children: What you should know about diagnosis & overdiagnosis"

Apr 06, 2021

Why kids rebel (and what we can do to encourage cooperation)

Most kids are ready to be cooperative. But they recognize limits to our power, and when we overreach, kids regard reject our authority as illegitimate.

Continue reading "Why kids rebel (and what we can do to encourage cooperation)"

Mar 26, 2021

Melatonin, milk, and breast pumps: Does timing affect infant sleep?

Breast milk produced at night contains higher levels of melatonin. Milk expressed in morning has higher levels of cortisol. So mistimed milk might cause trouble.

Continue reading "Melatonin, milk, and breast pumps: Does timing affect infant sleep?"

Mar 17, 2021

Hunter-gatherers subsidize families...for the benefit of all

Freedom-loving, egalitarian, practical: Hunter-gatherers know parents can't afford to raise kids without help. So everybody pitches in, and society thrives.

Continue reading "Hunter-gatherers subsidize families...for the benefit of all"

Mar 06, 2021

Iron rich foods: How to improve children's iron status through diet

Need to boost your child's iron levels? Iron-rich foods can help, but there's a catch. Many foods contain chemical barriers to iron absorption.

Continue reading "Iron rich foods: How to improve children's iron status through diet"

Feb 25, 2021

Exercise for children: How physical fitness benefits the brain

Studies reveal the cognitive benefits of exercise for children. Moderate-to-vigorous activity may stimulate brain growth, improve focus, and help kids learn.

Continue reading "Exercise for children: How physical fitness benefits the brain"

Feb 15, 2021

When do babies sleep through the night?

Many babies begin to "sleep through the night" (at least 5-6 hours) by 3-6 months of age. But some take longer, and night-to-night variability is common.

Continue reading "When do babies sleep through the night?"

Feb 03, 2021

What's the right age to start potty training? It depends on your goals

In Western countries, many kids begin toilet training between 24 - 36 months. But elsewhere, early training is the norm, and it may be more beneficial. An evidence-based look at choosing the right potty training age.

Continue reading "What's the right age to start potty training? It depends on your goals"

Jan 21, 2021

Teaching critical thinking: The first step is to pause and reflect

Why do we fall for fallacies? Biases and cognitive skills matter. But the most crucial factor is whether we take the time to pause and reflect.

Continue reading "Teaching critical thinking: The first step is to pause and reflect"

Jan 08, 2021

What happens when adults lie to children?

What happens when adults lie to children? Kids tend to become more dishonest, and they might be at higher risk for aggressive and antisocial behavior problems.

Continue reading "What happens when adults lie to children?"

Dec 31, 2020

When does peer pressure start? Early. Very early in life.

Peer pressure starts long before adolescence. When faced with a choice between telling the truth and backing a popular falsehood, even 4-year-olds will buckle.

Continue reading "When does peer pressure start? Early. Very early in life."

Dec 21, 2020

When do babies sit up by themselves, and what can we do to help them?

When do babies sit up? Most reach this milestone between 4 and 8 months, but it depends on us. We can give babies a boost by helping babies build key muscles.

Continue reading "When do babies sit up by themselves, and what can we do to help them?"

Dec 09, 2020

Want to make kids happy? Help them experience the warm glow of giving.

Are kids intrinsically selfish? No. When given the chance, young children tend to show kindness. And like adults, they can experience the warm glow of giving.

Continue reading "Want to make kids happy? Help them experience the warm glow of giving."

Nov 29, 2020

Preschool social skills: How to raise kind and competent kids

What social skills are important to preschoolers? And how do we nurture these abilities? Evidence-based tips for fostering preschool social skills.

Continue reading "Preschool social skills: How to raise kind and competent kids"

Nov 19, 2020

Data-driven tool for making wise decisions about social distancing

Wish you knew the risk of contagion at local venues and events? This online tool -- created by researchers -- can help.

Continue reading "Data-driven tool for making wise decisions about social distancing"

Nov 14, 2020

Parenting stress: 12 evidence-based tips for making life better

Overwhelmed by parenting stress? Try these research-based tips.

Continue reading "Parenting stress: 12 evidence-based tips for making life better"

Nov 01, 2020

Vote for your child's future: How to persuade people to cast a ballot

Our kids aren't getting the world they deserve. How do we persuade others to vote on their behalf?

Continue reading "Vote for your child's future: How to persuade people to cast a ballot"

Oct 26, 2020

Spaced learning: Why kids benefit from shorter lessons -- with breaks

If you want learning to "stick," a single, long lesson is usually less helpful than multiple, short lessons. Read more about the spaced learning effect.

Continue reading "Spaced learning: Why kids benefit from shorter lessons -- with breaks "

Oct 18, 2020

Help kids make friends: 12 evidence-based tips

How can we help kids make friends? Here are twelve tips based on the latest research.

Continue reading "Help kids make friends: 12 evidence-based tips"

Oct 10, 2020

Choosing books for beginning readers: Sometimes less is more

What are the best books for beginning readers? Books with simple, minimalist illustrations can help kids focus -- and better understand what they are reading.

Continue reading "Choosing books for beginning readers: Sometimes less is more"

Oct 02, 2020

The newborn senses: What can babies feel, see, hear, smell, and taste?

How do newborns perceive the world? Can they see in color? How blurry is their vision? Can they recognize you by scent? Learn more about the newborn senses.

Continue reading "The newborn senses: What can babies feel, see, hear, smell, and taste?"

Sep 26, 2020

Infant toilet training: The scientific evidence

The science of infant toilet training. Information about potty training techniques, baby bladders, and the potential benefits of early toilet training.

Continue reading "Infant toilet training: The scientific evidence"

Sep 22, 2020

National Vote Registration Day

Parents and children suffer when politicians make bad choices. What can we do about it? Vote!

Today is National Vote Registration Day in the United States. For help getting registered, visit:

https://vote.gov/

And don't delay! In some states, the registration deadline is coming up fast.

Continue reading "National Vote Registration Day"

Sep 18, 2020

Stereotype threat: How exposure to stereotypes can hinder performance

Yes, children notice stereotypes about race, gender, wealth. And the effects aren't good. Read about stereotype threat, and how we can help kids overcome it.

Continue reading "Stereotype threat: How exposure to stereotypes can hinder performance"

Sep 08, 2020

Improving spatial skills in children and teens: 12 evidence-based tips

Spatial skills are crucial for success in STEM and the visual arts. Try these evidence-based activities to boost your child's spatial reasoning abilities.

Continue reading "Improving spatial skills in children and teens: 12 evidence-based tips"

Aug 31, 2020

Not actually angry: Black children and boys more frequently misjudged

Unconscious biases can make us perceive anger where none exists. How many children's "behavior problems" are caused by adults getting it wrong?

Continue reading "Not actually angry: Black children and boys more frequently misjudged"

Aug 22, 2020

Teaching empathy: Evidence-based tips

Can we nurture empathy in children? Yes. Evidence-based tips for teaching empathy, based on the latest discoveries in psychology and neuroscience.

Continue reading "Teaching empathy: Evidence-based tips"

Aug 14, 2020

Music and intelligence: Do music lessions improve cognitive skills?

Music training can help kids process speech, and it can boost other cognitive skills too. But the effects depend on the duration and content of training.

Continue reading "Music and intelligence: Do music lessions improve cognitive skills?"

Aug 08, 2020

Working memory tips: How to help kids focus and stick to a plan

Boosting working memory performance helps kids succeed. How can we improve a child's ability to focus, concentrate, and follow instructions?

Continue reading "Working memory tips: How to help kids focus and stick to a plan"

Jul 31, 2020

Bedtime problems in children: Solutions for the science-minded parent

Bedtime problems are common in young children, but they aren't inevitable. Why won't kids fall asleep at bedtime, and what we can do to turn things around?

Continue reading "Bedtime problems in children: Solutions for the science-minded parent"

Jul 24, 2020

Bedtime fading: An evidence-based, step-by-step guide (with examples)

Got a child who won't fall asleep at bedtime? Bedtime fading is a technique for re-aligning your child's internal clock with the bedtime you desire.

Continue reading "Bedtime fading: An evidence-based, step-by-step guide (with examples)"

Jul 17, 2020

Baby sleep deprivation: How to tell if your baby isn't sleeping enough

Is there such a thing as baby sleep deprivation? How do we know if a baby is getting enough sleep? Here are the signs -- and the reasons we should care.

Continue reading "Baby sleep deprivation: How to tell if your baby isn't sleeping enough"

Jul 09, 2020

How to connect with nature: Tips for tuning into the natural world

People who connect with nature are happier. Kids are better-behaved. So how can we help our families feel a greater sense of connectedness? Evidence-based tips.

Continue reading "How to connect with nature: Tips for tuning into the natural world"

Jul 01, 2020

Kids who feel connected with nature are happier -- and better-behaved

How does nature benefit children? Studies suggest that kids have fewer emotional problems - and behave more prosocially - when they feel connected with nature.

Continue reading "Kids who feel connected with nature are happier -- and better-behaved"

Jun 15, 2020

How to reset your child's internal clock for an earlier bedtime

To adapt kids to an earlier schedule, we need to expose them to the right environmental cues…and more. A comprehensive guide to resetting your child's internal clock.

Continue reading "How to reset your child's internal clock for an earlier bedtime "

Jun 05, 2020

6 mistakes that white parents make about race - and how to remedy them

White parents need to talk with their kids about race, but mistaken beliefs often get in the way. Here's what parents need to know to become better agents of change.

Continue reading "6 mistakes that white parents make about race - and how to remedy them"

May 28, 2020

Toilet training techniques: The fast track

Toilet training in less than a day? Fast-track toilet training techniques can be effective, but they aren't for everyone. Here's what parents need to know.

Continue reading "Toilet training techniques: The fast track"

May 22, 2020

Babies expect fairness, and prefer people who behave with fairness

Babies expect us to share resources equally. They prefer people who behave with fairness. But they are also learning about favoritism. Can we nurture fairness?

Continue reading "Babies expect fairness, and prefer people who behave with fairness"

May 18, 2020

The Covid nineTEEN Project offers free, online tutoring during the stay-at-home crisis

Do you know a teenager who is interested in volunteer work? Or an elementary school student who could use some online mentorship and tutoring?

The Covid Nineteen project brings together high school student volunteers and elementary school kids who are stuck at home.

Using Zoom, teens provide free, online activities and one-on-one academic tutoring to kids in grades 1 through 5.

The project is based in California, so schedules are geared to Pacific Standard Time. But organizers say they welcome participants from outside the state. Learn more about it at covidnineteenproject.com

Continue reading "The Covid nineTEEN Project offers free, online tutoring during the stay-at-home crisis"

May 08, 2020

Raising helpful kids: Tips for teaching generosity and kindness

How do you teach kids to be helpful? Studies suggest we should avoid heavy-handed tactics and bribes. We need to nurture our children's natural inclinations to do good.

Continue reading "Raising helpful kids: Tips for teaching generosity and kindness"


Copyright © 2006-2021 by Gwen Dewar, Ph.D.; all rights reserved.
For educational purposes only. If you suspect you have a medical problem, please see a physician.



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