learning

Good Grades May Harm Student Health

Good grades are positive, right? The answer is not as straightforward as you might imagine. Of course, good grades can be terrific. That is, unless the stress of getting them causes children to feel unworthy or fail to develop abilities that matter much more than grades. Even for children who […]

Compass-Inspired
positive parenting

Positive Parenting: Powerful Ways to Raise Healthy Kids

The term positive parenting has become more widespread as the practice of parenting becomes influenced by research in the new scientific field of positive psychology. What is positive parenting? Positive parenting focuses on parenting practices that nurture the development of children’s core internal strengths. Rather than focusing on kids’ weaknesses […]

Compass-Inspired
Role models influence youth

How Role Models Influence Youth Strategies for Success

As teenagers grow to young adulthood, who are their role models? Who do they emulate? Why? One of the most popular articles at Roots of Action is What is a Role Model? Five Qualities that Matter to Teens. Collected from my research on highly successfully, civically-engaged young people, it describes […]

Resourcefulness
Back-to-School Articles 2020

55 Best Back-to-School Articles for Parents 2020

Whether back-to-school this year will involve in-person or remote learning, it is always a time when parents and teachers revisit what is most important for children and how to best support their development.   This popular list of back-to-school articles was updated for the 2020-2021 school year. Some articles focus […]

Compass-Inspired

Service Learning Projects Foster Positive Development

When I was a teenager, we didn’t have a term for service-learning. Projects existed to volunteer in our communities but not many people thought about the lifelong value of such projects. Today, I know that my life was changed as a result of working with a group of students to […]

Empathy
Children and Families Thrive When Communities Care, by Marilyn Price-Mitchell PhD

Children and Families Thrive When Communities Care

Communities make a positive difference for children and families when they connect around common values, form meaningful relationships with each other, and provide resources that help kids flourish in life. We know this to be true, not just from research, but because we know deep in our bones that the […]

Compass-Inspired
Coaching Youth Sports: Beyond Winners and Losers

Coaching Youth Sports: Beyond Winners and Losers

Coaching youth sports is a rewarding job, particularly for adults who see their roles beyond winning and losing. Coaches of youth sports are role models and key players in making sports experiences gratifying and beneficial for children and teens. According to the National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS), “sports participation […]

Resilience
Imagination and Play are Essential to Healthy Childhoods, by Brenna M. Hicks PhD

Imagination and Play are Essential to Healthy Childhoods

Have you taken time lately to witness your child’s imagination at work? Just stood and observed as creative play unfolded in front of you, without prompts or coaching? Children at play are in their most natural and happy state. Through your child’s play, you can witness the development of character […]

Creativity
The Benefits of Play are "Oh, so Big!" by Katie Hurley LCSW

The Benefits of Play are “Oh, so Big!”

Many scholars have studied and written about the benefits of play for children. According to psychologist and research professor Peter Gray, play “serves many valuable purposes. It is a means by which children develop their physical, intellectual, emotional, social, and moral capacities.” For quite some time, my daughter was afraid […]

Creativity