Thursday, March 29, 2012

Watch Her Grow: One-Year Old!

Q-ball is one-year old today!

 Tonight she will celebrate with her first cake and ice cream experience after enjoying favorite foods of falafel, hummus, and sweet potatoes. (Blueberries is still the ultimate favorite, so we had it for breakfast, as always...)

We started the party last night by letting her get really messy with flavored yoghurt-
 a special treat!  (She's chowing down on her second cup in the pictures!)

I can't believe it. To celebrate on the blog, I have a puzzler I'd like to share.
I called to make her one-year check-up on March 1, and I was told that appointments were only booked 28 days out, so I needed to call on March 2. I was too busy that day, so I called on March 3.  And, then I was told that they were booked until April 5.  Fuzzy math???

So, I do not have baby stats to share today, but they are coming!

Interactions with Materials
  • She continued to like playing with stuffed animals this week. Especially hugging them. She would carry them to me and want me to have them ask her for a hug. Not very Montessori, but oh, well. We are learning words!
  • Balls! Everywhere!
  • Also, cups. She loves getting cups out of the cabinets and pretending to drink out of them. Or, "smell" (another new word) them- I'd given her an old cinnamon spice container, and the habit of smelling has carried to everything!
  • Favorite materials: balls, cups, books, books, books, and the bunny Aunt B gave her

Interactions with Others
  • I think it's so funny to take Q-ball to a playgroup with older toddlers. Toddlers love "babies" who are sooooooo much younger. They run up to tackle hug her, which used to result in immediate tears. But, now Q-ball is just clearly scared, but avoiding tears.
  • During the natural parenting meeting, Q-ball stayed in the nursery without me for nearly half the meeting! Just another dad she'd never met. I couldn't believe it! Maybe it's almost time for a date night outside of the house!
Interactions with Space
  • She just keeps climbing up stairs.  She loves it!
  • She also loves dancing! She likes when I turn on music (she has even asked for it with signs) so she can sway from side to side.
Interactions with Life
    • I forgot to mention last week that she had started attempting to use her spoon to eat. While she still clearly prefers her hands, she has continued practicing. She does know that I will serve her food with her spoon, so she hands it to me when she wants more food.
    • And, she has been using a few more signs this week.  It's very exciting. This week she learned "cheese" and is very quick to ask for it! She's also using "more" and "all done" at meals.  Daddy and I think meals are funny because it's when we use the most signs with her, and sometimes we can pretty much she the annoyance and mockery on her face as she just randomly waves her hands.
    What a year!  How did you celebrate the big "1"?
    To see the rationale and purpose for the Watch Her Grow series, please check out this post!

    Wednesday, March 28, 2012

    Wordless Wednesday: Relaxing

    Q-ball is really interested in pillows this week.  When she doesn't know I'm watching, I've seen her just lounging on pillows that are on the floor.  She's even used our fat cat as a pillow!  So, making the bed has been a treat!

    Downward Facing Dog

    Friday, March 23, 2012

    Encouraging Healthy Eating in Children

          Since writing this post about my family's experiment/experience with only eating organic foods for one week, I have really been analyzing what I feed my family and what changes, if any, should be made to ensure that Q-ball will be eating foods that are best for her as she continues to eat more and more solids. I've read The Omnivore's Dilemma, The Unhealthy Truth and countless blogs (some of the most informative and/or fun: 100 Days of Real Food, Cookus Interruptus, and Food Politics.)  I've also participated in several Slow Food groups meetings sponsored by our local natural parenting group and have learned to make kefir and yoghurt. I'm even trying my own sourdough using the methods from Wild Breads. And, I've talked to trusted friends and family about their ideas and habits involving healthy eating.  But, I realized I hadn't done my usual "straight to the source" research method! I found a lot of information to share- some of which really surprised me. I've actually decided to devote two Science Friday posts to this topic.  This Science Friday post will generally discuss parental influence in developing children's eating habits.  And, a next Friday's post will discuss how a mother's eating habits can affect children's eating habits. 
        To start with, as anyone who has children knows, infants enter this world driven by physical needs- especially that of food!  While infants certainly cannot feed themselves, they do recognize and make known when they are hungry. The AAP recommends that mothers nurse infants "on-demand," i.e. whenever they show signs of hunger. By making this recommendation, the AAP is acknowledging that infants know best when and how much to eat.  Studies have found that young children can regulate their own caloric intake.  In one study, children who drank high-calorie energy drinks early in the day, naturally ate less at lunch, while those that had similar looking drink with few calories in the morning, naturally consumed more energy dense food.  But, as I imagine anyone reading this can attest, our ability to self-regulate, defined as the ability to override an impulse, food consumption is lost overtime (I can certainly attest as the majority of the research for this was completed while I was indulging in a lack-of-sleep induced/overly caffeinated chocolate binge...) This lost of control can be attributed to family's and society's influence on shaping habits as a means of socialization. Researchers have discovered that in regards to eating, parents socialize their children in three ways:
    1. "Interactive partners"- model behavior and convey values and ideals through daily interactions; (Studies show the following: children are more likely to try new foods if their parents are more likely to try new foods, and children whose parents eat more fruits and veggies are likely to also eat more fruits and veggies.)
    2. "Direct instructors"- tell children what foods are healthy and what are junk; reinforce (positively and negatively) children for selecting different types of foods
    3. "Providers of opportunities"-  grant or restrict the opportunities and situations to have different types of foods (One study found that just the accessibility of fruits and vegetables in a home accounted for 35% of the difference in consumption of these foods.)
      Photo credit:
          Just reading this information might lead one (like me) to think, "Okay, this won't be too hard, I'll just offer Q-ball healthy choices and keep her away from items that are not as healthy."  Well, unfortunately, the research shows that it is not that simple.
        First of all, as many parents know from experience, kids love sugar.  Really, really love it. And, research seems to show this is a biologically motivated preference that lasts until adolescence.  When children and adults were both given combinations of water and sugar to find the balance that tasted the best, adults liked the ratio that equated to about a soft drink. Kids never maxed out on the sugar. There was literally so much at the end of the experiment, that the sugar didn't even dissolve!  This kind of love and biological wiring makes it hard for a parent to make cabbage look appealing.

        Again, this might lead you to believe that you should just ban sugar.  But, studies have found that not allowing children access to snack foods or even limiting access to snack foods (ice cream, cookies, and chips- oh my!) will actually lead to overeating when the kids do get their hands on them. 
    Photo credit:
        Restricting bad foods is not the only method of controlling children's eating habits.  Parents are also famous for encouraging their kids to "take a few more bites" or in some cases "Eat MORE!" healthy foods.  Well, this, too, can have negative effects.  In one study, under parental pressure, 83% of children ate more than they would have. While this may sound great, especially if it meant more healthy food, in reality, forcing more food is simply weakening children's ability to self-regulate. As was previously stated, children know how much of to eat.  But, over time, children gradually lose this ability.  Another study gives different portion sizes of mac & cheese to children ranging in age from 2 to 5.  While the 2-year-olds, simply stopped eating when they were full, the 5-year-olds would continue to eat based on portion size.
        Over the long-term, pressure children to eat healthy foods can even backfire.  Although the short-term effect of pressure to eat results in more food eaten, in the long-term, it is children that are not pressured to eat that eat more healthy foods, according to one study.  Studies have found that when children are pressured to eat healthy foods, they are more likely to dislike them as adults and have negative reactions to different types of foods.
       So, what's a parent to do??  The studies seem to agree on the following:
    1. Trust your child! If he says he is full, he is full!  Children have different rates of growth and body shapes that can influence food intake. Before taking action on your own, talk to your doc if you are concerned about food input.
    2. Offer lots of different healthy foods.
    3. But, don't state that foods are off-limits.  Allow children practice moderation with treats.
    4. Involve children in shopping and food prep.  Use this as a teaching opprotunity.
    5. Set a good example!  Parental influence seemed to be the biggest theme in all studies. If you want your child to eat fruits and veggies you have to eat fruits and veggies!
         If you want to learn more about a mom's habits can influence her children's eating habits, check back next Friday!

    How do you encourage healthy eating at home? Do you think your child has the ability to self-regulate? 

    American Academy of Pediatrics Section on Breastfeeding. (2009). Sample hospital breastfeeding policy for newborns. Retrieved from
    Galloway, A., Fiorito, L., Francis, L., & Birch, L. (2006). "Finish your soup": Counterproductive effects of pressuring children to eat on intake and affect.  Appetite, 46. 318-323.
    Kral, T. & Rauh, E.M. (2010). Eating behaviors of children in the context of family environment. Physiology and Behavior, 100. 567-573.
    Kroen, G. (2011, September 26). Kids sugar cravings might be biological. Retrieved from 

    Thursday, March 22, 2012

    Watch Her Grow...

    This Week's Foci: Language 

    Interactions with Materials
    • This week she enjoyed practicing opening and closing doors.  She's done this in the past, but has again taken an interest.  Luckily, no pinched fingers yet, but it did lead to a meltdown last night after I waited for her to finish practicing opening and closing the bathroom cabinet for several minutes before taking a bath.  Finally, I determined it was time to take a bath- she did not agree, and let me know!
    • She also enjoyed practicing putting items in and out of things this week- especially tea bags she'd found in the pantry in an old Cheerio box.
    • Favorite materials: boxes, books, stuffed animals

    Interactions with Others
    • Not too many observations here.  She's still being very adventurous in going out on her own- until someone new tries to say hello!
      Interactions with Space
      • As I said, she's very quick to run away from me when we go outside. As long as I can see her little feet below the playground equipment, I let her go.  Yesterday, suddenly, the little feet disappeared. I got up to investigate, and by the time I was on the other side of the playground structure (for ages 5-12!), she had crawled up 6 steps to the very top!  I brought her back down, but once she discovered this new skill, she just wanted to practice and practice.  My playgroups are going to be a bit more work for Mama now!
      Interactions with Life
      Not a good picture, but they were had to find this week. She's been asking me to put all of these bows on her head!
      • Whew! What growth we had in language this week! Overnight, Q-ball seemed to gain a whole in vocabulary.  She now recognizes and responds to the following words: "hug" (she loves leaning into me, Daddy, a teddy bear, or the cat), "sleepy" (she lays on a pillow- however, it should be noted she does not know what sleep is as we've continued to have major issues here....), "more", "dog" (she'll try to bark!), "bath", and possibly some more!
      • She loves being outside. She knows her Daddy often takes her outside for a few minutes when he gets home from work and gets very excited. And, very sad when we just don't have the time.
      • It's amazing what habits she is starting to learn as I am making an effort to allow her more of a role in practical life activities. For example, after brushing teeth, she knows to put her toothbrush in the cup, and she gets so excited about doing this, we often skip the actual brushing of teeth.
      • Speaking of which, she still has lots of teeth coming in!  Possibly 6!!
      What words did your child seem to recognize overnight??
      To see the rational and purpose for the Watch Her Grow series, please check out this post!

      Wednesday, March 21, 2012

      Wordless Wednesday: Thirsty Baby!

      Apparently, our kinda-sorta Montessori approach to drinking from a cup (described here) is working.  Last night this almost toddler must have tried to drink a gallon of water!

      MORE, MORE, MORE!!!

      Monday, March 19, 2012

      Fun with Water!

      In How to Raise an Amazing Child the Montessori Way, Tom Seldin suggests providing children with a water activity for fun. He suggests setting up the water station in an area where spills can easily be cleaned up. It was a beautiful day outside, so Daddy took Q-ball out to explore the water!

      He filled a large bowl (we used an upside down cake cover, so that it would provide a large, flat, stable surface) with water and placed it in front of Q-ball. He placed 2 plastic cups and 2 silicon prep cups within arm's reach and let her figure out how to use the materials.

      Now, Seldin also recommends, "[establishing] and [enforcing] some basic ground rules such as no splashing," but some activities are just more fun with less emphasis on practical life and more emphasis on exploration.

      Q-ball loved splashing, dipping the different sized cups into the water, and, of course, tasting!  As Seldin states elsewhere in his book, "As long as objects are clean and safe, you don't need to limit this experience- your baby will decide what tastes good and what doesn't."  This has pretty much become my mantra, and Q-ball has certainly tested its limits! For this activity, I deemed grass and leaves as "clean..."

      Montessori Monday

      Thursday, March 15, 2012

      This Week's Foci: Movement and Language 

      Interactions with Materials
      • Carrying things remained a big theme this week- water bottles, balls, baskets- she seems to favor big objects when moving them from place to place.  I think this is interesting as it must be more difficult for her to carry the bigger objects. I guess she is working on coordination and gross motor control.
      • I noticed again this week that she was getting very frustrated not being able to see the pictures hanging on the wall.  They are just too high! So, we hung some more pictures at her level using our old calendar pages. She's really loved going up and looking and talking to them.
      • Favorite materials: books, balls, and new pictures on the wall
      Daddy bought me the OFFICIAL dodge-balls!

      Interactions with Others

      • She still resists having other adults hold her. She pretty much immediately starts crying if a stranger or even someone she has seen before tries to hold her.
      • Even Daddy cannot hold her during nap and bedtime.
      • But, she has been quicker to give people huge smiles as soon as she sees them.
      • She is starting to wave "bye-bye." Her favorite time to use the wave seems to be to kick Daddy out of the room at "night-night" time.  This is clearly not an indication of a desire to go to sleep as it typically takes 30-90 minutes to get adorable Q-ball to sleep.
      Interactions with Space
      • This week she started practicing walking backwards.
      • She is also really excited about being able to walk around the house with Mama when we are doing chores. She loves to hold my hand and be able to get around on her own.
      Interactions with Life
      • She has started to make the sign for airplane. It's her first sign, so I'm very excited! Since making it, I believe that she has started to pay more attention to signing. It seemed she also made the sign for milk last night, but I will wait to see it again to make the official announcement.
      • She got her first fever this week! It started late in the day and was gone by morning with no apparent cause. I would say it was a teething fever, but research for this  post revealed there is supposedly no connection.
      • Q-ball has been losing a bit of interest in solids recently. Some days I can only get her to eat a few blueberries. But, I trust she knows her own needs.
      • Daylight Savings Time really screwed up the little sleep we got around here.  How did DST affect your household??
      To see the rational and purpose for the Watch Her Grow series, please check out this post!

      Wednesday, March 14, 2012

      Wordless Wednesday: Fenced In

      She had a whole park to explore, but she wanted to stay by the fence and watch the people passing below!

      Monday, March 12, 2012

      Montessori at Mealtime: Better Late Than Never

          While we love following Dr. Montessori's principles at home, we decided not to use her methods at mealtimes.  Instead we used baby-led solids (a.k.a. baby-led weaning).  These approaches do have similarities, but some very fundamental differences.  Melissa from Vibrant Wanderings did an excellent comparison of the two here, so I will not try to re-create. While we have been very happy with our decision to use BLS, we have decided it is time to introduce a few more skills.
         As I explained in a previous post, one of my primary reasons for choosing BLS when introducing Q-ball to solids was that it recognizes babies' developmental capabilities. I believe it is absolutely necessary to give babies and children opportunities to do things themselves.  This is critical for them to demonstrate and further master their capabilities.  Dr. Montessori absolutely agreed.  As she explains in The Montessori Method, "nature has furnished [the child] with the physical means for carrying on these various activities, and with the intellectual means for learning how to do them.  And our duty toward him, in every case, that of helping them to make a conquest of such useful acts as nature intended he should preform for himself."
          And, yet....a few weeks ago I realized that we have not given Q-ball very many opportunities to drink from a cup or to use silverware.  So, how do you implement Montessori feeding methods a little late?  Here's what we are doing:

      Using A Spoon
          At least during one meal a day, I give Q-ball a child-sized spoon.  The first few times, I gave her the spoon after she had already eaten some food as that she would not loose complete interest in eating.  But, I realized that this was not as necessary as I expected.  While she was very excited about the spoon, she typically continued eating (except for a few times when I think she was pretty much finished eating anyway.)    
          When presenting her with the spoon, I demonstrate scooping up food from her plate (kept on the table- not her high chair) and then using the spoon to eat the food.  I've had the most luck doing this at breakfast when we are eating sticky oatmeal vs. dinner when we are eating rolly-polly peas. In accordance to BLS, I do not feed her from the spoon.  I simply place the spoon in front of her.When she requests more food, I continue serving her food on her spoon.
          Has it worked? Not quite yet.  At first, she looks at the spoon with a big smile, and then use her fingers to dig the food off of the spoon.  Now she does occasionally get the spoon in her mouth, but sans food.  I believe she has the concept, though.  She does hold the spoon correctly, and it hasn't been thrown to the floor nearly as much as I anticipated (unlike last night's dinner of potatoes and green beans...)

      Using a Cup
          As for drinking, we have tried a variety of things, but Q-ball seems to big one of the biggest proponents of breastfeeding around and is confused as to why she should bother with anything else.  She refused a bottle, thought a sippy cup was a really fun teething toy, and did start to use a straw cup, but never really mastered swallowing.  So, now I am just presenting her with a cup filled with a little water at the end of our meals. Before placing the cup in front of her, I demonstrate how to drink from it. She gets very excited. Then she picks up the cup looks curiously at the water inside and rolls the cup around in her hands, moving the water in the cup. And then dumps the cup on her high chair table and tries to use her hands to drink it.
      Has it worked?
         Obviously, not yet.  But, I'm certainly not giving up. She'll obviously get it soon enough. 
      Montessori Monday

      Montessori, M. (1912). The Montessori Method. New York: Fredrick A. Stokes Company. (Trans. Anne E. George).

      Friday, March 9, 2012

      Baby's First Teeth

          My other post on baby's teeth has been wildly popular with parents who are googling information on their baby's first teeth! I, too, am interested in the subject, so I thought I'd do a little more research.  Last week Q-ball's top teeth started coming in- 4 of them in at once!  But, I was curious because her left central incisor (the upper left tooth) did not seem to be coming in, while both of her lateral incisors (the teeth next to the center teeth...) were coming in. Everything I had previously read always said that the first four teeth were the top and bottom middle teeth.  So, I decided to find out: What is the typical order of deciduous teeth eruption? Or in what order will my baby's first teeth come in?
         I didn't find information that is as specific as I typically like, but I ended up finding some other information to make me slightly more accomplished.  Here's a random smattering of most interesting information I found:
      • Lower teeth typically erupt first- typically around 6 months.
      • Teeth typically emerge in pairs.
      • Girls typically get their baby teeth before boys.
      • The formation of teeth represents two seemingly opposing actions- the creation of bone and the resorption of bone (or the breakdown of bone).  Teeth are fully formed in bone, but most break out of the bone to emerge.
      • A 2000 study published in the Journal of American Academy of Pediatrics found that fever is not associated with teething, despite claims by many parents and pediatricians.
      •  The eruption of teeth changes the composition of saliva in infants. About one month prior to teeth emergence, their is an increase in various proteins that are typically found in human blood, likely indicating the weakening of the gums.  Following the emergence of teeth, the following increase in infant saliva: certain enzymes (namely amylase) that help breakdown food and IgA which is an antibody that helps with immunity.
      • Lower birth weight is associated with later eruption of baby teeth.
      Bayer, P. & Beatrix, B. (2000). Tooth eruption. Trends in Biochemical Science, 25(8). 366.
      Morzel, M., Palicki, O., Chabanet,C., Lucchi, G., Ducoroy,P., Chambon,C., & Nicklaus, S. Saliva electrophoretic protein profiles in infants: Changes with age and impact of teeth eruption and diet transition. Archives of Oral Biology, 56(7). 634-642.
      Sajjadian, N., Shajari1, H., Jahadi, R. Barakat, M., & Sajjadian, A. (2010). Relationship between birth weight and time of first deciduous tooth eruption in 143 consecutively born infants. Pediatrics neonatal, 51(4), 235-237.
      Wake, M.,Hesketh, K., Lucas, J. (2000). Teething and tooth eruption in infants: A cohort study. Journal of American Academy of Pediatrics, 106(6). 
      Williams, D. (2009, March 15). Teeth eruption charts. Retrieved from

      Thursday, March 8, 2012

      Watch Her Grow...

      This Week's Foci: Movement and Language
       Interactions with Materials
      • Now that I think about it, we've been out of the house a lot this week! It's hard to think about what she's been doing while at home other than taking naps!
      • But, she loves, loves reading books!
      • She has finally also noticed stuffed animals (mainly my old bears that are on my bed!). She'd never really paid attention to them before, but now she likes to pick them up and carry them around with her.
      • She did continue to practice her gross motor skills by kicking and rolling items around the room.
      • Favorite materials:  natural items- grass, bark, leaves; books; stuffed animals; balls

      Interactions with Others

      • She largely plays independently when we go to a play group, but she really watches all of the other children and tries to mimic their actions. Yesterday she tried to climb up a slide like a much older boy at the park.
      Interactions with Space
        • She loves walking, walking, walking.  Just moving around the house.  She's not as loud as she used to be with crawling, but typically makes a "popping" noise with her mouth as she moves.
        • She loves that she has mastered the "release" action.  To demonstrate her mastery, she will pretend that she is going to hand Daddy or me an item, and then quickly pull it away. She does this a few times, and then finally hands it over.
        Interactions with Life
          • She really started to notice airplanes this week.  We live along the flightpath, so we hear planes coming and going all day.  She now stops and looks to the window for them after I took her outside to show her the source of the noise. We also learned the sign for airplane, and, while she hasn't made it yet, she often looks to me to make the sign.
          To see the rational and purpose for the Watch Her Grow series, please check out this post!

          Wednesday, March 7, 2012

          Wordless Wednesday: Bike Ride to the Park

          This past weekend Q-ball took her first bike ride to the park! It's true there was a bit of an adjustment period in the bike trailer, but once we got going, she seemed to enjoy it. And, she loved walking around the park- she'll just move out on her own!

          Friday, March 2, 2012

          What is Your Child Dreaming About?

              It has been a few weeks since I focused on a specific researcher/psychologist, so this Science Friday is going to focus on Lawrence Kohlberg. Kohlberg was an incredibly intelligent American psychologist (he completed his bachelor's degree from the University of Chicago in just one year!) who became extremely interested in the work of Jean Piaget while completing his graduate degree. The majority of Kohlberg's research is an extension of work started by Piaget. Unfortunately, Kohlberg struggled with depression throughout life and drowned himself in a swamp at the age of 59.
               Those of you who have studied psychology or child development very likely have read about Kohlberg's stages of moral development.  But, for this post, I want to focus on one of his lesser own projects- his work on dreams.  Like his work on moral development, his studies of dreams were a continuation of Piaget's initial studies which established a that a child's understanding of dreams unfolds in set, pre-determined stages. Piaget and Kohlberg used the study of dreams as an extension of their work in overall cognitive development, namely in determining a child's ability to distinguish "real" from "unreal."
               Occasionally, Q-ball sleeps, and Daddy and I wonder what she dreams about. Babies are very well known for talking, crying, and moving about in their sleep. Unfortunately, infants are not well known for their ability to describe their experiences for scientific study. Thus, they are not included in Kohlberg's work which relied upon interviewing children about their dreams. But, other researchers have explored the topic of infant dreams.  It is known that newborns have much more active or rapid eye movement (REM) sleep than adults. (One-hundred percent of a fetus's sleep is REM, while only 25% of a 2-year old's is!)  During REM sleep, the brain is sorting through a person's past experiences through dreams.  Many researchers believe that newborns, then, are dreaming of being in mama's belly.  In fact, some researchers claim that SIDS is actually a result of an infant dreaming about life as a fetus as fetuses don't breathe. In very sharp contrast, some researchers don't believe that infants dream at all as some tests show little brain activity during infant REM sleep.  I've personally always like the theory in Dr. Karp's book that babies experience so many new ideas every day that they have lots and lots to process (i.e. dream) about.
              So, Piaget and Kohlberg's research starts with children who are about 4-5 years old.  Kohlberg defined an "invariant" six-stage sequence of dreaming that does not necessarily correspond to specific ages.  At first, a child believes dreams are 100% real. A 4-year old who was asked about a giant in her dream told Kohlberg, "It was really there but it left when I woke up. I saw its footprint on the floor." Soon, a child realizes dreams are not real, but happen outside of himself, as if he were watching a movie.  As time goes on, he knows that dreams are invisible, originate inside himself, and, finally, that dreams happen completely within them.  This full understanding of dreams typically occurs around age 6 or 7. (For those familiar with Piagetian theory, this corresponds to the onset of concrete operations.

          Photo credit:
              In line with other Piagetian developments, Kohlberg believed that the understanding of dreams is something that a child develops completely independently. What parents teach or explain to him about dreams, Kohlberg theorizes, has no impact on a child's understandings of his dreams.  Kohlberg supports this position by explaining that it is very unlikely that all parents would present the six-stages to their children; yet, all children Kohlberg researched experienced all six stages.  Additionally, and this was my favorite part of the study, Kohlberg conducted his dream interview of the Atayal people, an aboriginal tribe in Taiwan most known for their tattoos. Adults in this tribe believe that dreams are real.  Still, despite their teachings, the children within the tribe still experienced Kohlberg's six-stages of dream understanding.  But, when these children reach Kohlberg's final stage, the impact of the adults in their understandings starts to emerge, and they all believe their dreams are real. 
              What to take from this? Mainly, that your child will outgrow any night terrors or other thoughts of dreams. But, according to Kohlberg, it will happen in his own time. While your child absolutely needs your comfort, your reassurances that dreams are not real will not help speed up his understanding.

          Christos, G.A. (1995). Infant dreaming and fetal memory: a possible explanation of sudden infant death syndrome. Medical Hypothesizes, 44(4). 243-50.
          Crain, W. (2011). Theories of development: Concepts and applications. Boston: Prentice Hall.
          Dreams and babies (2012). Retrieved from 
          Graz, D. (2009). Lawrence Kohlberg: An introduction. Farmington Hills, MI: Barbara Budrich Pubslishers.

          Watch Her Grow...

          This Week's Foci: Movement and Language
           Interactions with Materials
          • This week Q-ball was practicing how to make items move.  She loved rolling found cylinders across the room- an old cardboard oatmeal container, a metal cylinder container, and Mason jars.
          • We've started to increase the amount that we are listening to music. While in her room, I will play a CD that her Great Grandma gave her.  She reacts to the music- getting excited and dancing to happy beats, and looking around and trying to figure out what happened during the silence between songs. 
          • Q-ball loves playing with Daddy's bedside table that includes three drawers- all full of socks.  She likes to open each of the drawers and move the socks from one to the other.
          • Favorite materials:  anything cylindrical, picnic basket from Great Grandma N.

          Interactions with Others
          • She is now very smiley with strangers when she sees them in public. And, has even said "hi" and waved at the appropriate times!
            Interactions with Space
            • Pretty much all "getting around" is now in the form of walking.  Very little crawling takes place anymore.
            • She's still practicing carrying items from place to place.
            • She has enjoyed playing games with object permanence this week. Using a small object like a stone, I will play the game that magicians play when the put something in one hand then it shows up in there other hand (except in my case, Q-ball can watch it move...), and she thinks it is very funny.  She has also been playing with a picnic basket that had a lid that closes.  She enjoys placing items in the basket, closing the lid, and then opening it again to see that the items are still there.
            Interactions with Life
            • Daddy and I feel that Q-ball is really starting to understand language much more this week.  We both found times that we think she said her own version of "Barnum" (our cat and her best friend).  Additionally, she seems to be taking more notice of the sign language we are using with her.
            • She now makes a "ba..." as "peek-a-boo" when we play.
            • She has 3 or 4 top teeth coming in all at once!  So far, it doesn't seem to be causing too much pain, but she has certainly enjoying sucking and chewing. 
            To see the rational and purpose for the Watch Her Grow series, please check out this post!
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