Sneak peek: My list of best child development books for parents that will offer insights into your child’s behavior.
I’ve been on a new mission this year to read more…and not just on a glowing screen, but actual books. I read an article that some of the most successful people around (Oprah Winfrey, Bill Gates) read at least 1 hour per day. In other words, the pattern of their success is ongoing learning. They spend at least 5 hours per week in some sort of deliberate learning (usually reading). To emulate this (if even a little) I’ve put together some of the best child development books for parents.
The thing I love about these child development books is that they combine both research-based insights and real-life examples. Although I deeply value research, some child development and parenting books are heavy on research but do not offer actionable advice. On the other extreme are parenting books that are primarily based on first-hand experience, psycho-jargon, but limited real research about child development. The books on this list strike a nice balance between providing enough research to be reliable but also offer helpful tips to parents for actual challenges they experience in real life.
It’s a work in progress so check back often. Enjoy!
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Child Development Books For Parents
One of my all-time favorite parenting and child development books. It focuses on helping kids manage their emotions and how to foster empathy and resilience in kids.
A great book for new parents who want a research-based look at many of the common challenges we all face. A great combination of research and intuition.
My book! A wonderful guide for moms with new babies (first-time or not). This book walks with moms and provides research-based guidance, developmental guidelines and real-life experience. Don’t walk those first few months of the motherhood journey alone–this book can be a support and guide.
A wonderful book to help kids build executive function and manage their emotions through games and activities. If you have a child who struggles with routines, sensory issues or big emotions, this book can help!
A wonderful book to help you put the big picture of parenting back into focus. Real-life wisdom about how to create connections with kids while still taking care of yourself.
A classic in the child development field. This book has helped millions of parents learn the power of words and how our language can help build a relationship with our kids.
Another modern-day classic book for parents. Using the science of child development, parents learn how to use discipline the correct way–to teach, not punish or demean kids.
If your child has a strong-willed or spirited temperament, this is a must-read! Learn how to approach all aspects of parenting so that your child will respond better to you.
An eye-opening book that I return to again and again. It really helps you see what the goal of parenting really is–to nurture and guide our children to become who they are meant to be. Must-read for all parents!
If you have a child nearing preschool and have started considering what type of educational setting they need, this book is for you. It walks parents through the ideal preschool situation and what the goals of preschool should be.
A wonderful book for moms to help us see how we can balance giving of ourselves to our kids with actually caring for ourselves too.
Another book that is a great starting point for parents or teachers. It uses research (in a friendly way) to help uncover many common child development myths.
One of my new favorites for the last few years. It is especially good for parents of tweens and teens. Using real-life examples, it helps parents see how to connect with kids in real ways and support them through life’s struggles and pressures.
Another new favorite. By examining decades of research on attachment theory and attunement, this book shows us how the discord and disconnect we find in our relationships can actually help build stronger bonds.
This is the book we all need right now to help us make research-informed parenting decisions. It helps us get past all the misinformation and answer many common parenting issues.
If you have a toddler, this is the first book you should read. It offers a gentle, but effective way of disciplining toddlers keeping their development in mind.
Written by a top expert in the field, this book helps parents focus on building a strong relationship with their kids (which, by the way, helps their behavior too).
Related reading: Best Books for Baby Brain Development
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