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.

Your Baby’s Call of the Wild (Guest Post by Angela Hanscom)

If you start at an early age, your baby will learn to love the outdoors and will enjoy herself there. These times will help her to be less clingy, nagging, overly dependent, constantly needing company or entertainment. The stimuli which nature provides is unparalleled. Even the youngest infant becomes fascinated by listening to birds, watching the movements of flies, butterflies, shadows and leaves. Air circulation,...

5 Reasons We Should Stop Distracting Toddlers (And What To Do Instead)

Distraction is a popular “redirection” tactic for dealing with an infant or toddler’s undesirable behavior. Its appeal is understandable, because it’s about aiming a child to another activity rather than confronting an issue directly. It helps us dodge the bullet of our child’s resistance, which might include anger, tears or a total meltdown (and we’re all eager to avoid those things, especially in...

The Most Loving Way to Say ‘No’

I share lots of advice about toddler behavior because I know many parents find discipline issues intensely challenging. I was one of them. With my first child, especially, learning to recognize and respond effectively to her tests and limit-pushing behavior (which seemed to spring out of nowhere towards the end of her first year) took a concerted effort. A father I consulted with recently shared a spot-on analogy...

Will You Let Your Children Play?

“Letting our children play” sounds easy and so obvious, doesn’t it? We all know play should be encouraged, because it’s essential for healthy development: physical, cognitive, psychological and, most imperatively, the development of extended potty breaks for parents. Yet many of us find it surprisingly difficult to refrain from interrupting or interfering when our children play. This might be because: We...

Secrets To Magical Kids’ Parties

Over the past twenty-one years, my husband and I have thrown dozens of kid parties for our three children. While a few of these celebrations were just okay, the majority were memorable. Some were even magical. Here are the important lessons we’ve learned along the way: It’s all about involvement I can totally understand the desire to throw a big bash and invite every adult friend in our address book to celebrate...

Setting Limits With Respect – What It Sounds Like (Podcast)

In the four years since I started my web site, I’ve written over three hundred articles. I have always tried to be as specific and descriptive as possible, because I am acutely aware how challenging it is to communicate Magda Gerber’s respectful care practices through the written word. To my amazement, many of you are understanding and successfully implementing these practices without ever seeing (or hearing)...

The Parent I Might Have Been

Just listen to your instincts… Don’t over think and overcomplicate… Every child is different… I often hear these reasons for not embracing a particular parenting approach, and I generally agree. Yet it is hard for me to imagine raising my three children without the gift of clarity I received twenty years ago from infant specialist Magda Gerber. Gerber’s RIE methods didn’t come to me naturally, yet they...

9 Best Ways to Stay (Mostly) Unruffled With Toddlers

Toddlers are experts at ruffling our feathers, but these tiny people mean no disrespect. Testing our limits (and patience) is impulsive behavior on their part and a developmentally appropriate way to seek answers to important questions like: Am I safe and cared for? Do I have confident leaders?  Are they with me or against me?  Is it okay to want what I want and feel what I’m feeling?  Am I a bad kid? While...

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