elevating child care

Parenting ideas that fly.

I am Janet Lansbury. Welcome to my blog. As Janet Julian, I acted and modeled for many years, but it wasn't until I became a mother and sought guidance from infant expert Magda Gerber that I found my life's work: parent education. Since 1994, I have enjoyed teaching RIE parenting classes in Los Angeles.



I have also been a presenter at early childhood conferences, written infant/toddler parenting articles, and served on the board of directors of Resources for Infant Educarers (RIE). Raising a child is one the most important and challenging jobs we will ever have. It brings a considerable amount of joy. It can also be confusing, discouraging and haphazard. My goal is to provide clarity, inspiration (and maybe a smile or two) by sharing insights I've gained through my parenting classes, my experiences as a mother, and studies with my friend and mentor Magda Gerber. This blog is dedicated to her memory.

Stop Feeling Threatened By Your Child’s Behavior

When I consult with parents about their children’s more challenging behaviors, I sometimes offer a visual that I hope will put otherwise volatile situations into perspective. I’ve been reluctant to share this on my blog for fear it might be misinterpreted, but since so many of the parents I hear from continue to struggle with remaining centered and calm when their children push limits and buttons, I decided to...

6 Gifts That Encourage Child-Directed Play

In case you haven’t noticed, play is hot. Once taken for granted as a universal childhood right, in the last decades aggressive marketers of early learning products and a focus on standardized testing have horned in on this valuable developmental time in a child’s life. But lately it seems our collective appreciation for child-directed play has never been stronger, and there could be no better news for our...

Anger is a Scary Emotion (Guest Post by Kate Russell)

Kate Russell is unafraid to lay bare her personal parenting struggles. With insight and refreshing candour, Kate’s blog “Peaceful Parent, Confident Kids” chronicles the bumpy path she’s taken transitioning from a more reactive, punitive approach to the respectful recommendations of my mentor, child specialist Magda Gerber. As a reader and a fan, I was thrilled when Kate accepted my request to write a guest...

Let Your Kids Be Mad At You

I always write my posts from personal experience, though I am rarely the protagonist. This story is especially personal and, honestly, it feels a bit risky to share, but it’s important, so I’m taking the plunge…   I had the perfect mom. We adored each other and had a wonderful relationship right up until her death four and a half years ago. She loved to laugh and make others laugh, and everyone who knew her...

Problems With Gentle Discipline

One thing I’ve discovered since beginning this blog is how tough it is to come up with general guidelines for a parenting topic that is as specific-to-the-moment as respectful discipline. I’ve needed to examine and re-examine the effective responses that for me have become second nature. I’ve struggled to explain in words interventions that are so much easier to demonstrate in person.  So I appreciate the...

The Real Reasons Toddlers Push Limits

Limit-pushing behavior can confound even the most attuned parent or caregiver. Why would our sweet darling throw her toy at us when we’ve just asked her not to, and then add insult to injury by smirking? Is she evil? Does she have a pressing need to practice throwing skills? Maybe she just hates us…  Sensitive, intensely emotional, and severely lacking in impulse control, toddlers often have “unusual” ways...

My Baby Can’t Sit

Hi Janet, Just wanted to share a little story with you: I have a 7 month old son. Since I discovered RIE through your website he has never been in a Bumbo, Jolly Jumper, ‘seated activity centre’, or any other such device which would place him in a position he couldn’t get into himself, or which would restrict his freedom. A few days ago I was with some new friends who both have babies similar in age to my son....

The Healing Power of a Toddler’s Tantrum

The madness began at snack time, which we offer in our RIE parenting classes once the babies are all mobile and able to sit independently. Participation in snack time is always the children’s choice, and they quickly learn and enjoy the routine. They are requested to sit on the floor at the snack table (or on stools once they’re walking and able to sit at a slightly higher table). We ask them to wipe their...

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