Stanley I. Greenspan, M.D.
Pediatrician, child psychiatrist and expert on developmental disorders in early childhood, Dr. Greenspan wrote about healthy development as well as about autism, adhd, and other developmental challenges. He co-authored, with T. Berry Brazelton, M.D., "The Irreducible Needs of Children" -- emphasizing the need for parents and children to spend generous amounts of time together. [See Family and Home Network's review of this book.]
Dr. Greenspan co-authored with Stuart G. Shanker, D.Phil, "The First Idea: How Symbols, Language, and Intelligence Evolved from Our Primate Ancestors to Modern Humans." It's a fascinating book! If you'd like to join a discussion group about this book, please use FAHN's contact form to let us know of your interest.
Parents can make a dramatic difference in how children use their wonderfully different natural abilities. Children vary considerably in the ways they use their senses and bodies and the ways they respond to the world. For each unique pattern, however, parents can create experiences that promote flexibility. The capacity to love, to empathize with others, to be confident and assertive, and to think creatively are complex products of many of our traits; indeed, they are the results of our relationships and experiences over many years.
A child's personality is a product of the unique and continuous interplay between nature and nurture. And this interplay happens in your relationship with your child. Your child brings his or her "nature", and you bring warmth and love wrapped up in a particular pattern of caring. It operates like a lock and a key. Finding the right key creates new patterns of interactions. Out of this new relationship, a child can often develop the warmth and confidence he or she needs.
For each stage of development there is a special "key". I believe that this knowledge about how to find the "keys" that will help any child, even those with difficult challenges, needs to be in the hands of each and every caregiver and parent.
Stanley Greenspan, 1995. The Challenging Child.
See Dr. Greenspan's guide to Healthy Development.