elevating child care

Play Space Inspiration

Observing our children’s self-directed play helps us to understand them, become more empathetic and attuned, and it is the key to finding more joy in day-to-day parenting. These benefits (and more) are the reason I’ve shared so many play-inspired posts and videos. Most have focused on the parent’s role in nurturing child-directed play and the invaluable learning that happens when we do. I’ve shared specific...

Parenting Against The Grain – One Family’s Personal Struggle and Triumph

Although awareness of infant specialist Magda Gerber’s “babies are whole people” approach is increasing, many of her recommended child care practices are still considered unconventional. Parents and professionals who embrace Gerber’s vision of respectful infant care often feel alone in their views. And without the support of family, friends or associates (sometimes even the family doctor), the already...

Would You Let Your Baby Do This?

There’s a certain ubiquitous playground apparatus that has always given me the willies. Luckily, my children never seemed drawn to it. My nervousness may well have made them wary. Even if we’ve trained ourselves to remain calm, just observe and spot, our children know. Their radar is that good. So when a mom from one of my parent-infant guidance classes (in which we strongly advise and encourage natural gross...

What Will My Baby Really Need? A New Parent’s Checklist

Hello all! I’m a first-time poster, and an expectant mother! I find that I’m overwhelmed trying to determine what our little one will truly “need”, versus what mainstream parenting says we need. My sister just had her first child in July, and she and my mother have offered a lot of advice to me (with the best of intentions). I’m just trying to get to the meat of it and figure out what...

Better Toys For Busy Babies

Hello Janet, I’m so pleased to discover your blog. I’m slowly reading through it bit by bit. I came across it when I was searching for more information about Magda’s teachings. I have her book “Your Self-Confident Baby” and I find that your website adds a wealth of information to the book. I have many parenting books and I tried the attachment thing, but ended up so tired every day that I was starting to...

Baby, You Are Born To Play

I really didn’t think it would work. At a RIE Conference several years ago a friend and I were presenting a workshop on infant and toddler play and attempted an audacious experiment. We asked another friend to bring her 15 month old daughter to the event, daring to hope that the baby might give a live demonstration of independent, self-directed play. At least fifty pairs of eyes were on baby Tess as she sat in her...

Safe At Home (Guest Post by Loren Chadima)

Loren, her husband and son are participants in my RIE parenting class, and have become my friends. They had a tragic experience with their beloved first son Chase.  Loren courageously volunteered to share her story in the hope that it would help others, even though reliving these events has been extraordinarily difficult for her…   In her book, Dear Parent – Caring For Infant With Respect, Magda Gerber...

A Lesson From Babies…It’s Okay To Struggle

Last week’s parent/toddler class was all about feeling ‘stuck’.  The previous week, 21 month old Audrey had wedged herself between the bars of the wooden climbing structure and looked at me with a worried expression. “Are you stuck?” I asked. I moved close and — without touching her — talked her through pulling her legs out from between the bars and reaching to the bar below so that she could...

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