The Atlantic magazine ran a terrific article, Why Kids Should Use Their Fingers in Math Class, and I am still blown away with the connections they make between brain activity during finger movements and during math calculation and comprehension. Let me get out my hands and count the ways I could use this information!…… Continue reading Finger Awareness and Math Skills: Recent Research, and “Where is Thumbkin?”
How Young Can You Teach The Skills That Develop Grit?
I love the concept of “grit”, probably because I see it in so many of the special needs kids that I treat. Meeting major challenges of living either crushes you or makes you stronger. Researcher and author Angela Duckworth has championed the study of grit, and schools are even adjusting their teaching curricula to try to…… Continue reading How Young Can You Teach The Skills That Develop Grit?
The Informed Parent and Happiest Baby on the Block
I read The Informed Parent recently to decide whether it would be a good resource for my clients, and found that the chapters on The Art and Science of Baby Soothing, SIDS, and Sleep Training were worth reading. This book distills a lot, a whole lot, of research that can confuse those parents who want…… Continue reading The Informed Parent and Happiest Baby on the Block
Active Baby? Active Mom? It May Be Epigenetics Again….
This week’s New York Times ran a story Does Exercise During Pregnancy Lead to Exercise-Loving Offspring? that echoes what I told a mom last month during a Happiest Baby consult about how her behavior during pregnancy “taught” her son to love movement. She is an athletic woman, a pediatric physical therapist, and her baby really didn’t…… Continue reading Active Baby? Active Mom? It May Be Epigenetics Again….
Take Notes with a Paper Notebook, But Only if You Can Write Quickly
Research in Psychological Science last spring and in an article in The Chronicle of Higher Education suggests that writing notes by hand requires the listener to synthesize a lecture more effectively than laptop note-taking. Three studies showed that testing immediately after a lecture and even a week later still saw improved retention of conceptual information when students…… Continue reading Take Notes with a Paper Notebook, But Only if You Can Write Quickly
Epigenetics and Infant Development
The Wall Street Journal ran a short piece last week on recent research into epigenetics and the effects of childhood poverty. Alison Gopnik was the author of “Poverty’s Vicious Cycle Can Affect Our Genes”. Some scientists believe that the chronic limited security and support many children experience in poverty changes their genetic makeup to bias…… Continue reading Epigenetics and Infant Development
For Rosh Hashanah, Some Zitzfleish?
Pamela Druckerman, the author of “Bringing Up Bebe”, has written a NYT piece, “Learning How to Exert Self-Control” on 9/12/14. She reviews a new book by Dr. Walter Mischel, the primary researcher of the famous test of self-control in young children that you know as “the marshmallow test”. Dr. Mischel has a new book out,…… Continue reading For Rosh Hashanah, Some Zitzfleish?
Breastfeeding Supports Speech Development and Self-Calming
U.S. News and World Report published a great article on the research surrounding the connection between breastfeeding and jaw control on August 29th. Melinda Johnson wrote “Breastfeeding Builds a Better Jaw, and Other Benefits for Babies”. This article explains some of the dental and motor benefits for infants, but only hints at the additional contributions that…… Continue reading Breastfeeding Supports Speech Development and Self-Calming
Do Fathers Matter? NYT Reviews the Question
The NYT has reviewed a new book, “Do Fathers Matter” by Paul Raeburn. The assumption is that they make unique contributions to their children’s lives before, during, and after conception. This book explores the science behind this belief. Some researchers are studying the benefits that come from having involved and caring men in children’s lives.…… Continue reading Do Fathers Matter? NYT Reviews the Question
Father’s Day: Time to Celebrate and Play Rough
The WSJ recently ran a terrific article, “Roughhousing Lessons From Dad”, on the deeper benefits of dads hanging out and physically playing with their kids. Boys or girls, the benefits of having a father that plays with his kids seems quite obvious. This article reminds us that what starts out as a pick-up game during…… Continue reading Father’s Day: Time to Celebrate and Play Rough
Eating Fish in Pregnancy and Beyond: Eat This/Not That
The FDA has made an additional recommendation to pregnant and nursing women: eat at least 8 but not more than 12 ounces of certain fish for your baby’s health. Don’t eat too much albacore tuna but eat some light tuna. Specific choices they recommend are the fish most likely to have low levels of mercury.…… Continue reading Eating Fish in Pregnancy and Beyond: Eat This/Not That
The Science Behind Handwriting
The New York Times ran a fantastic story this week, summarizing the scientific research on the benefits of handwriting on brain development. As a pediatric occupational therapist with a specialization in handwriting instruction, it was very exciting to see their conclusions. I have read the studies they referenced, and they are solid science, not just…… Continue reading The Science Behind Handwriting