Practical Research Parenting
Science-based practical advice for parents
Welcome to Practical Research Parenting.
I am a Mum, and a Psychologist. If your kids were born, or will be born after 2011, I am writing, and talking to you. I am researching common parenting challenges as they arise for me, and sharing what I find. Please join me on this amazing journey of discovery.
What I have learned about baby and toddler sleep so far…
My podcast introduces the practical tips we can learn from parenting science. Learn while you do your chores…
I want to help parents, including myself, to enjoy parenting, to form strong, loving relationships with their children, and to raise happy, well adjusted children…
Sarah Ockwell-Smith wrote a deep, well researched article on self settling here. I agree with a lot, but not all that she says. Here are my thoughts: "Babies are no more capable of self settling than they are of riding a bike. Self soothing is...read more
I had a lot of success using the techniques outlined in the "Dream Baby Guide" by Sheyne Rowley. When Alex was 6 months old, using one week of preparation as detailed in the book, then implementing a new routine, Alex went from waking and feeding 3 times a night to...read more
Another sleep-training technique is gradual withdrawal (1), which is similar to the camp out method, but allows more interaction when Baby is distressed. Gradual withdrawal involves 3 steps: Distinguish needs (e.g. Nappy change), from wants (e.g. Comfort sucking)....read more
Most toilet training intervention studies use toilet training packages (multiple tactics at once). Making it hard to assess each tactic. However, I will try to assess each tactic based on relevant data and theory. 1. Underwear rather than nappies (diapers) A couple of...read more
"My baby cries when placed in her cot. How can I ever put her down calm, sleepy, but awake." (Said by many mothers, myself included). This is the first of a series on emotion management and sleep. Babies need to develop a range of skills to learn to fall asleep by...read more
How parents respond to emotional displays like tantrums, kicking, hitting, smashing, and yelling is important for building children's ability to control their emotions. Controlling emotions, and particularly the ability to calm down, is important for sleep. The first...read more
Don’t feed or rock your baby to sleep is common advice. A new take on the same theory suggests that this advice is flawed. As detailed here, the dominant theory is that feeding or rocking can become associated with sleep. The concern is that the parent is then...read more
"Don't worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you." Robert Fulghum (according to BrainyQuote.com) For an audio version of this post, and a video demonstration of modelling see...read more
I have a newborn. I remember the enduring sleep deprivation from last time. What can I do from birth to get back to sleeping sooner? Elizabeth Pantley’s No-Cry Sleep Solution recommends specific strategies for meeting baby and family sleep needs from birth. They fit...read more