KIPS Blog: Parenting Assessment in Practice & Research

Investing in Early Years and Parenting Are Key for Lifelong Success

Posted by Marilee Comfort on Wed, Feb 22, 2017 @ 12:35 PM

 

 If you follow the KIPS Blogs, you know that we are big fans of James Heckman (1, 2), from the University of Chicago Center for the Economics of Human Development, who is a tireless advocate for investing in early intervention to gain greater returns for children, families, and communities. 

In a previous blog, we took a look at his small book entitled Giving Kids a Fair Chance (A Strategy that Works).  As a Nobel Prize winning economist, Heckman’s writing is often highly technical.  However, he wrote this powerful little book in plain language to get his message out to the public.  In Giving Kids a Fair Chance, Heckman makes 3 powerful points.  For his website, he has distilled these 3 points into what is known as the Heckman Equation: invest + develop + sustain = gain. Heckman estimated a sevenfold return on quality investments in the preschool years for three and four-year-olds. There is no other known public investment that can make this claim.  

Or is there?

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Tags: Parenting Assessment, child health,development, learning, early childhood investment, outcomes assessment

Parental Adversity, Brain Development & Early Intervention

Posted by Phil Gordon on Wed, Dec 04, 2013 @ 01:58 AM

Parents with current and past adversity may end up parenting in a way that poses a threat to the baby; this refers to all forms of maltreatment, and in turn the baby's entire neuro-hormonal system will adapt to its emotional environment creating structures and responses that become the foundation for future development.  Thus, “From a basic biological perspective, the child’s neuronal system – the structure and functioning of the developing brain – is shaped by the parent’s more mature brain” (Siegal, 1999:278).  Through early detection and intervention we can repair relationships and support parents in nurturing their children to promote healthy neurobiological development.

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Tags: Parenting Assessment, brain development, trauma, adverse experiences/toxic stress, child health,development, learning

Promoting Quality Parenting Prevents Obesity

Posted by Phil Gordon on Thu, Nov 21, 2013 @ 01:22 PM

Since we are in between Halloween, when we give our children copious amounts of candy, and Thanksgiving, the national massive feast day in the U.S., childhood obesity comes to mind.  This might be an ideal time to review a fascinating study revealing a link between parenting quality and obesity.  First, some background on childhood obesity.  According to the Centers for Disease Control, the prevalence of obesity has doubled for children, and tripled for adolescents in the last 30 years.  Currently, about a third of children are overweight or obese. Obese children have a strong tendency to become obese adults. Obesity has healtheconomic, and psychosocial consequences.  Treating obesity is difficult, with low success rates, so prevention is our best route.  Certainly, there is a strong genetic component in obesity.  However, the rapid increase in the prevalence of obesity cannot be explained by genetic changes in our population.

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Tags: parent improvement, parent-child interaction, Parenting Assessment, child health,development, learning

Nobel Prize Winner Calls for Assessing Parenting Quality

Posted by Phil Gordon on Tue, Jul 09, 2013 @ 11:29 AM

 

Good things certainly do come in small packages!  In particular, I am referring to a short 137- page book entitled Giving Kids a Fair Chance (A Strategy that Works) by James Heckman from the University of Chicago.  As a Nobel Prize winning economist, James Heckman’s writing is often highly technical.  However, he wrote this powerful little book for the public.  This book should be required reading for all working in our field, and for legislators and policy makers.

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Tags: parenting outcomes, Parenting Assessment, assessing parenting, child health,development, learning

The Power of Play in Assessing Parenting

Posted by Phil Gordon on Thu, May 09, 2013 @ 08:27 AM

In a recent New York Times article, David Dobbs, reviewed research by Alison Gopnik and others regarding the power of play in child development.  Dobbs says about play, 

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Tags: parent-child interaction, Parenting Assessment, assessing parenting, child health,development, learning

Parenting’s Role in Combating Disparities in Health & Development

Posted by Phil Gordon on Fri, Dec 14, 2012 @ 03:58 PM

 

A recent article by Dr. Jack Shonkoff in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, entitled  Leveraging the Biology of Adversity to Address the Roots of Disparities in Health and Development  stresses the importance of parenting and the use of assessments in combating chronic medical and developm ental challenges for children at risk. 
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Tags: parenting outcomes, parenting behavior, Parenting Assessment, disparities, adverse experiences/toxic stress, child health,development, learning