At what age do children begin to tell lies?

four preschoolers, girls and boys, writing busily at a table

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.

Do babies feel empathy?

baby face, closeup, looking up with wonder and empathy at mother

Yes, babies feel empathy. They can “catch” other people’s emotions. They show sympathy, and even offer to help. But their behavior depends on how we treat them.

Moral sense: Babies prefer underdogs and do-gooders

mother holds smiling infant in the air

Do babies have prosocial impulses? Do they feel empathy? A preference for do-gooders? An inclination to be helpful? Do babies know right from wrong? Let’s be clear: We shouldn’t hold babies responsible for moral transgressions. They can’t anticipate all the consequences of the things they do. If your baby hits you in the face with … Continue reading

Empathy and the brain

© 2008-2014, Gwen Dewar, Ph.D., all rights reserved Human empathy depends on the ability to share the emotions of others, to feel what other people feel. It is regarded by many people as the foundation of moral behavior. But to some, the concept seems rather airy-fairy. What does it mean to say “I feel your … Continue reading