The Carlson and Zelazo Lab at the University of Minnesota, has looked at how we can use the context of daily routines to introduce high-quality parenting practices in at-risk families in an effort to reduce household chaos and increase parent and child cognitive outcomes. Reflection Sciences Trainer, Andrei Semenov, and his research team are working on a new study: the “Ready4Routines” project, in collaboration with Harvard Center on the Developing Child, Acelero Learning, Frontiers of Innovation, and the Los Angeles-based Westside Infant Network. The project is designed to introduce and reinforce high-quality daily routines for parents who may find themselves in a chaotic and unpredictable environment. Ready4Routines delivers an 8-week parenting intervention to Early Head Start and Head Start families across the nation. Over the course of the intervention, parents learn about the importance of predictable routines as well as activities that are specifically designed to reinforce the development of self-regulation skills. Parents learn routines around meal preparation, bedtime wind-down and even activities based on mindfulness meditation that aim to reduce tantrums and increase emotional regulation. Over the past three years, our lab has been working with our collaborators on developing, revising, and implementing this project across the country and measuring its effect on executive function (EF) skills, parent-child relationships and various other outcomes. To date, we have seen associated decreases in parenting-related stress among parents who participated in the program. As measured by the MEFS App, we have also seen substantial improvements in children’s EF skills after their parents participated in this 8-week program. These EF skills are crucial for impulse control in children, as well as school readiness, academic achievement, social functioning, and mental and physical health. Our next steps in this program are to understand how parent-child relationships may change as a result of these high-quality routines as well as to explore how we can best make Ready4Routines accessible to all families.   By Andrei Semenov" />

Tag: healthy social development

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Part I: Executive Function: The Power to Resist

Executive function skills are important for a number of processes, but did you know that these skills also play a huge role in the power to resist temptations? Full Prefrontal is a podcast series led by Sucheta Kamath, Founder of Cerebral Matters and expert in brain training and executive function development. Sucheta and her guests,…

parent with children after executive function testing
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Father Influence on Cognition + Executive Function

Father influence on cognition + executive function is the topic researcher Alyssa Meuwissen, Ph.D., has explored over recent years. In both research and popular culture, moms have often been depicted as the “default” parent.  However, demographic trends show that dads are becoming more involved in the care of young children. There is great variety in…

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What Is Social Development in Early Childhood?

Social development in early childhood is an important part of a person’s overall health, well-being, and happiness throughout his or her life. Social development is very closely linked to cognitive and emotional development, and together these developmental markers and milestones build the foundation for developing relationships with other people, coping with stressful situations, and many…