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Kids

Two showing each other compassion and putting arms around each other sitting side by side

Growing Compassion: Raising Kids Who Respond With Care

“But who is going to help her?” Jacob asked. Jacob was a seven-year-old we had just met on the playground. He, along with several other kids including one of my own, had been playing the tag game “Sandman” on the play structure. Suddenly one of the kids tried to take a shortcut off the side…  Read More

kids looking at each other with curiosity

The Connective Power of Curiosity

Why Getting Curious Is Key to Our Personal and Collective Wellbeing

If you have ever spent any time with a preschooler, you know that their curious minds are always active. “Why is that bird sitting on that branch? What do birds think about? Can birds understand us? Where are the other birds? Why? Where? How come?” While charming, these endless questions can also get exasperating. At…  Read More

Why Small Changes Can Have Big Benefits

I can still remember mornings with toddlers like they were yesterday. The logistics of a morning routine seemed simple enough — breakfast in, warm clothes on, and out the door. Yet any parent can tell you that achieving these outcomes with a two-year-old is far from simple. “No!!! Noooooo!!!!” I remember my 2-year-old screaming as…  Read More

Kids getting on school bus

Back to School Priorities

“How are you feeling about going back to school?” I asked my youngest over breakfast. “I’m excited!” he responded quickly. I was grateful for the enthusiasm but realized that there might be more to the story.  Sure enough, the same child was on the verge of emotional collapse five minutes later. He was beside himself…  Read More

Teens walking to school and roaming the neighborhood independently.

Play Without Pressure and Room to Roam: Why Independent Activities Are Key to Wellbeing

In the past two years every major organization dedicated to adolescent health and development has sounded the alarm on mental health. The latest CDC data describes the crisis in detail. In 2021, more than four in ten students felt persistently sad or hopeless and nearly one-third experienced poor mental health.  In the wake of this…  Read More

Child laying on stomach playing video games with a headset on

Five Ways to Ease Screen Time Transitions

“There is nothing to do,” my youngest kid wailed again. In case we hadn’t heard he increased his volume when he repeated the word nothing. Then he scanned our home as if it were a barren wasteland.  I glanced at him and within seconds could pick out any number of enjoyable activities he could try…  Read More

Kids on a trail pointing into a dense bank of fog.

The Surprising Science of Awe and Why We Need It Right Now

“Wow, this is stunning,” my oldest said facetiously, staring into a wall of dense gray clouds. After a couple of hours of hiking in the dense forest, we had finally made it to the big, dramatic view.  Except that instead of a sweeping green vista, there were clouds. And we were inside them. “Isn’t it…  Read More

White teenager laying on bed looking at their cell phone. Their face is illuminated by the glow of the phone.

New Report Reminds Us (Again) To Talk to Young People About Porn

“When did you start talking to your kids about online porn?” a friend recently asked me, wincing a bit at the prospect of embarking on the conversations herself someday.  My face likely mirrored a similar set of tortured emotions as I responded, “Much earlier than I would have liked to. But when you look at…  Read More

Top 5 Blog Posts of 2022

1. Why Forecasting Emotions Can Help Kids Handle Them When we hit a rocky spot, it is certainly tempting as parents to hope that tomorrow will be a better day. Thankfully, we are often right! Sometimes all it takes is a good night’s sleep to increase our kids’ capacity to handle what comes their way.…  Read More

Child centered in a warm brown background expressing anger.

Rethinking Emotional Explosions

“Your turn!” one of my kids shouted to the other. I looked over to the kitchen table to see that they were engaged in one one of the many card games they had picked up at school. Buoyed by the warm glow of sibling cooperation, I turned to go upstairs.  It turns out that the…  Read More