The Visual Cliff Study

IMG_5257My all-time favorite study in the field of developmental psychology is the visual cliff.  Depth perception is such an important part of survival that it might be programmed into our DNA.  After all, our ancestors who walked off the edge of a cliff didn’t get to reproduce very much.  So researchers wanted to see if babies already demonstrated depth perception when they started crawling around in the latter part of the first year.

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Not Thinking Clearly

art21Parents of preschoolers often get upset or frustrated when their little one can’t do certain tasks.  The behavior of infants and toddlers is so different from that of adults that not much is expected of them.  But three, four, and five-year-olds are clearly capable of thinking, so why is it that there are many times when it is evident that they are not thinking clearly? Read more

Dirty Words

Child Playing with Ribbon Wand

Children explore their world in a variety of ways.

Back in the old days, when a young child uttered a “dirty” word, he was likely to suffer the rather unpleasant consequence of having his mouth washed out with soap.  While I hesitate to criticize the practices of previous generations, it is clear that this was inappropriate and often counterproductive. Read more

Parental Instinct

Mom and Baby Playing with Drum

Music class with Mom.

Babies don’t come with instruction manuals.  So how are you supposed to know what to do?  Well, I’m sure that many people have told you not to worry.  It’s instinctive.  You will just naturally know what to do.  Have you noticed how wrong they are?  Are there many times when you really don’t have a clue? Read more