A few weeks ago, a friend stumbled across a picture of her 10-year-old son and his younger cousin that threw her for a loop.
While visiting a pirate museum with family, the two boys became intrigued with a statue of a scantily clad woman dressed like a female version of a pirate. His grandmother snapped a picture of the smiling boys, one on either side of the statue—each boy with his hand carefully placed on the woman’s nearly bare chest. My friend was horrified. “He’s only 10!” she cried. “Don’t they realize that’s wrong?” She glanced at me for my opinion. “Um… teachable moment?” I suggested. Read more
Back-to-school can be a stressful time of year for both children and parents. Adding learning differences to the equation can increase levels of stress and may lead to anxiety. Reducing stress overall definitely helps the entire family be happier.
Children with dyslexia need additional emotional support to get through a school day Read more
“Be careful!” “Not so high!” “Stop that!” Concerned parents can often be heard urging safety when children are at play.
Recent research suggests that this may be overprotective and that kids need more opportunities for risky play outdoors.
Risky play is thrilling and exciting play where children test their boundaries and flirt with uncertainty. They climb trees, build forts, roam the neighborhood with friends, or play capture the flag. Research shows such play is associated with increased physical activity, social skills, risk management skills, resilience, and self-confidence. Read more
As little ones gather up their school supplies and head off to school this September, what are the attitudes about school that they bring along with their backpacks? In meeting kids during research, I have heard plenty of young ones say that they only like two things about school: gym and recess. It’s disarming for a college professor to consider this; we don’t have either gym or recess in college. Read more
I am no longer surprised. The presentations are varied. ‘‘I think I have wax in my ear.’’ ‘‘He keeps tugging at his ear.’’ ‘‘I hear a buzzing in my ear.’’ Sometimes it’s the shocked look one of my new pediatric residents gives to me, stating, ‘‘I think I see a bug in his ear.’’ By the end of the third year of their residency, regrettably, this surprised reaction fades as cases of ‘‘cockroach ear’’ become commonplace. Read more
New York lawmakers last week closed their 2017 session in “legislative hell,” as one Senator called it, without resolving a number of important issues, including the Child Victims Act, which would reform New York’s antiquated child sex abuse statutes of limitations (SOLs). It would extend the civil and criminal SOLs, revive expired civil SOLs for one year, and eliminate the “notice of claim” requirement that has hobbled public school victims’ access to justice. Read more
Visit any preschool classroom during free play and you will likely see a child pretending to be someone else.
Make-believe play is a ubiquitous part of early childhood. And beyond being fun for kids, pretending and other kinds of imaginative play are also believed by some to be critical to healthy child development.
Research has found a relationship between pretend play and a child’s developing creativity, understanding of others, and social competence with peers.
As a psychologist who studies imaginary play and Read more
“What will happen if your grade drops from an “A” to a “C”?” I sometimes ask during a check-up.
Many kids shrug and say, “Try harder next time, I suppose.” Others look shocked and anxious about the possibility and are speechless.
Still others will point at their parents and say,”THEY would kill me.”
Observe a toddler learning a new skill. You will see him repeatedly try to fit a ball into a hole until he is either successful or wanders way. He is not anxious or afraid of failure. He is not “stressed” about trying to learn. Although all children start this way, too often toddlers become big kids who end up in my office discouraged and worried about school performance. Today’s guest writers, based on the work of Dr. Carol Dweck, discuss ways parents can influence their children so that they embrace learning.
– Drs. Lai and Kardos
Imagine the following scenario: John, a single father of two, has been arrested. He is charged with theft and his bail is set at $2,000. Because John cannot meet this requirement, he is held in jail until his trial. His sons cannot remain on their own, and John has no immediate family who can care for them, so they are placed in foster care, in separate homes. After six weeks, John goes to trial and is found not guilty and released from jail.
John and his family’s lives have been drastically impacted by this experience. Because John was unable to Read more
Danielle was 14 when she met the man who would soon become her worst nightmare.
“I was adopted by a good Christian family,” she tells me during a recent interview. “I had a great relationship with my father. But when I hit puberty, I was molested and my mom didn’t help. So I ran away.”
Not long after, while waiting for the bus, a man approached her. “He offered me a place to stay, food, all the things I needed. He pumped me full of drugs, then threw me in a room with a bunch of guys and I was for sale.” The man she thought was her knight in shining armor was a human sex trafficker in disguise. Read more