Monthly Archives: August 2017

The Role of Early Nurturing in Preventing Hate

According to the late John Bowlby, co-founder of Modern Attachment Theory, the mother is the shaping influence of the baby’s coping capacity. But what we have now is a president who displays little ability to cope, has virtually no empathy, and who leads a base of supporters exhibiting more or less the same behaviors.

Not only is he triggered by the most benign stimuli, he has a desire to destroy what is good and promote evil. From my chair, that’s a mental illness – not a political perspective. Our church leaders should have bagged that one long ago, but many have not.

For this blog post, I have decided to style a response based on my study of maternal-infant attachment, and how this non-negotiable relationship affects a baby’s brain development and personality, in order to shed light on why some radical right-wingers may have taken up the cause of hatred.

I’ve read that people are usually unwilling to make changes in their lives until a catastrophe happens. (ResilienceDiscovering a New Strength in Times of Stress, by Frederic Flach, MD.) For I fear it will take a catastrophe – a complete upset of our nation’s homeostasis – before these shameless individuals feel even the slightest tug of conscience.

The real tragedy is Continue reading

In the Real World, Spelling Counts: Helping Kids Get Past Invented Spelling

Once I got over its blatant cuteness, it occurred to me that this little essay about our now deceased parakeet, Dundee, is a good example of “invented spelling.” At this time of year, when parents are just getting used to teacher expectations, I thought the subject would make an interesting post. As the parent of four grown children and former remedial reading teacher, I think I’ve got the street cred.

Invented spelling is what young children generally use once they have learned some phonics, but have not yet had enough visual exposure to words to memorize spellings. In addition, they have not yet learned (been taught) to think through spelling at a meta-cognitive level, applying conventional spelling rules and generalizations. 
When they invent spellings, children simply write the sounds

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