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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The science of toilet training: What research tells us about timing

© 2007-2021 Gwen Dewar, all rights reserved When is the best time to start teaching children about toileting? Infancy? 18 months? 24 months? Or even later? What does the science of toilet training tell us? There is surprisingly little research addressing the question. And, as I note elsewhere, each age is associated with its own Read More »

Preschool and kindergarten science activities about tracking animals

A little girl studying an animal track - a canine paw print - left in dirt.

© 2009 – 2021 Gwen Dewar, Ph.D., all rights reserved These preschool and kindergarten science activities build on what most young children are already interested in — animals! And in addition to teaching lessons about biology, they also offer kids opportunities to practice analytical, spatial, and symbolic reasoning skills. Where to begin: Free exploration with Read More »

At what age do children begin to tell lies?

Closeup of child looking sideways by Big D2112

Most kids begin telling lies between the ages of 2 and 4, as they develop better “mind-reading” skills and self-control. But understanding the morality of lying? That comes later.

Evidence-based social skills activities for children and teens (with teaching tips)

Building social skills: Diverse group of children playing together

© 2009-2021 Gwen Dewar, Ph.D., all rights reserved These social skills activities can help kids forge positive relationships — and better understand what other people are feeling and thinking. How can we help children develop social competence — the ability to read emotions, cooperate, make friends, and negotiate conflicts? Kids learn when we act as good Read More »

Signs of toilet training readiness: When to start, and when to wait

© 2021 Gwen Dewar, Ph.D., all rights reserved When children show signs of toilet training readiness, they may learn toileting skills more easily or quickly. But not all signs are equally helpful — or even relevant — to your family’s needs. Before you begin training, it’s important to decide on your individualized goals for potty Read More »