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Tag Archives: child development

How to hold a baby, plus newborn soothing techniques

Every new baby has exactly the same basic needs for food, comfort, cleanliness, and attention, but babies are also wonderfully complex little individuals, with moods and preferences. While you’re not going to know exactly what those preferences are until you meet the little guy or gal (and isn’t that going to be awesome when it happens?), it pays to review ... Read More »

Puzzles for all ages: preschool puzzles, jigsaw puzzles & more!

puzzles crocodile creek princess

There’s a reason why every preschool has stacks and stacks of chunky wooden puzzles: piecing a puzzle together is beneficial for your child’s growing body and mind in so many ways. Determining which shapes and colors match and joining them together to create a coherent whole enhances the following skills for young kids: Hand-eye coordination Fine motor skills Gross motor ... Read More »

The “quantity quandary”: how many kids should you have?

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Your sense of the ideal family size is probably based in your own upbringing, and often depends on whether your family arrangement worked well for you or not. For instance, if you were happy being raised in a large family, like Jeannie Ralston, writing for Parenting.com, you might want to furnish your kids with an upbringing just like your own. ... Read More »

Why do kids ask so many questions? (And: some answers!)

kid questions square

While, contrary to common memes, the average 4-year-old probably does NOT ask 437 questions every day (it’s mathematically impossible), there’s a reason why people believe this myth: because toddlers and preschoolers can be absolutely relentless in their curiosity. It makes perfect sense that someone who’s quite new to the world wants to know as much as they can about it. ... Read More »

Have more educational fun with Melissa & Doug!

melissa & doug band in a box

One of the things that I love about Melissa & Doug toys for young children is that many items come with a list of “Extension Activities” that work educational content into playtime, helping kids to pick up crucial skills organically. For instance, for the longtime favorite Melissa & Doug Grocery Store / Lemonade Stand, they suggest the following: Have the ... Read More »

The science is in: early bedtimes are better!

early bedtime is better

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: both our personal experience and loads of research show that early bedtimes are better for babies and kids. So we’re definitely fans of this article from Melinda Wenner Moyer at Slate, who is a strict adherent to early bedtimes. A summary of Moyer’s arguments: Her kids seem to be getting more ... Read More »

How to travel WITHOUT the kids, and stay in touch

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We’ve written a lot over the years about traveling WITH the kids – regulations on what gear you can bring, best practices for flying with a baby, and the perennial issue of how to keep restless kids entertained while squished into a small space. But we haven’t yet tackled what to do if the kids AREN’T coming along. First things first: who’s ... Read More »

The homework debate: are kids getting too much?

homework child

Homework has transformed quite a bit since we were kids: on the one hand, kindergarteners, who are now expected to sit in desks and do academic work (!!!) are now also expected to do daily work at home as well. On the other hand, homework is also sometimes optional: writer Elizabeth Flora Ross asked her daughter’s first-grade teacher to let her ... Read More »

Meet one of our favorite infant toys: the NogginStik!

infant toys nogginstik rattle clutching toy

The amount of infant toys out in the market can be overwhelming, especially for new parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and friends looking for that special gift for the new bundle of joy! That is why I always recommend the NogginStik Rattle Clutching Toy. It is a multi-activity baby toy that encourages brain development – plus, it’s absolutely adorable. At first ... Read More »

Why do kids have tantrums, and what should you do about it?

angry child tantrum

As unpleasant as they are, tantrums are a completely normal part of early childhood: according to the Supernanny website, one in five 2-year-olds may have two or more tantrums a day. (Yikes!) It’s a common behavior among kids ages 1-3, and can still occur for a few more years afterwards.  It makes sense: your child’s physical and intellectual skills are ... Read More »