Two Southern Illinois University Edwardsville psychology professors are setting the record straight when it comes to common misconceptions related to child development.
Myth busters Stephen Hupp, associate professor of psychology in the SIUE School of Education, Health and Human Behavior; and Jeremy Jewell, professor of psychology and clinical child and school program director, detail 50 commonly believed claims in their book “Great Myths of Child Development.”
“Parents are exposed to countless claims about what is best for a fetus, infant or child,” the co-authors note in the book’s introduction. “To be fair, everyone, including us, have believed in some myths at some time. In fact, we believed many of the Great Myths uncovered in this book until we started delving into the research.”
Among the myths exposed in Great Myths of Child Development are that most toddlers go through a “terrible twos” stage, couples dealing with infertility are more likely to get pregnant after they adopt and showing cognitively stimulating videos to babies boosts their intelligence.
What leads people to believe these myth milestones, despite research proving otherwise? The authors acknowledge many potential reasons, including celebrity appeal, word-of-mouth, misleading marketing and tradition.
“There’s a considerable amount of useful information out there about what parents need to know,” the authors said. “We thought it would be beneficial for parents to have a book that covers what every parent needs to NOT know.”
After each myth is debunked, the SIUE professors provide evidence-based resources for what actually does work when it comes to issues like fertility, education and disruptive child behavior.
Great Myths of Child Development is part of the Great Myths of Psychology Series. The book is now available on amazon.com.