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Topic: Dr. Susan Newman

The Value of Siblings: Don’t Listen to the Stereotypes

March 8, 2017

The nature vs. nurture question comes up frequently in education and parenting circles. By most estimates, it’s about 50-50. In other words, 50% of who you are comes from genetics and the other 50% is environmental. That allows parents and educators plenty of influence. So what does that imply for stereotypes about the “selfish only child”, the “responsible first child” or the “lazy youngest child”?   Parenting and psychology expert Dr. Susan Newman provides us the research behind the stereotypes and what parents can proactively do to avoid the stereotype trap. Guest Blog by Susan Newman, PhD If you are the parent of one child, it’s hard not to think about only child stereotypes and hope that none of them will… Read More

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Why your first born might seem smarter

March 24, 2016

by Nancy Weinstein While there is no genetic difference in cognitive abilities or personality by birth order, parents always ask me about it in a half whisper. No parent ever wants to admit that they compare their children, particularly when it comes to “smarts.” However, as explained by author Meri Wallace, there are personality traits evident in studies of children and birth order that could lead to higher academic achievement among our first-borns. The traits? Perfectionism, responsibility, workaholic. The explanation? Parents tend to dote more on their first born, closely monitor their achievement at every milestone, and often times even invest more financially. As a result, first-borns tend to have more one-on-one instruction as well as higher self-esteem and confidence, all of which can be closely linked to higher… Read More

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