Child Development Lessons

The Discipline Game

You’re babysitting or you’re a parent and you’ve got a misbehaving child or children on your hands. What’s the best method to handle the situation; guidance or discipline? Sometimes students have a difficult time knowing the best way to handle a misbehaving child. So, this game was created by Laura Vaske of Linn-Mar HIgh School in Marion, Iowa because she wanted her students to be able to think about when to apply certain techniques in misbehaving situations. She also wanted them to think about more than just HOW to implement the technique and more about WHEN to implement a technique. So, check out her game and give it a try the next time you’re teaching about guidance and discipline!

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder


When teaching about environmental birth defects, I like to address a 100% preventable, but 100% irreversible birth defect known as fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD). Students learn about FASD by participating in a variety of interactive activities.

Hands Are for Holding, Not for Hurting Child Abuse Activity

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Sometimes a teacher needs a variety of lessons and activities to choose from relating to the topics taught in the curriculum for different reasons. Sometimes, it’s because you just want to freshen up your plans or because the amount of time you have to teach something changes. Sometimes, it’s because new resources become available that you “just have to implement”. Sometimes, it’s because you need variety due to the personalities and dynamics of a class. Regardless of the reason, I thought I would share a new little project that I created and did with my Child Development students based on the child abuse topic: shaken baby syndrome.

Meeting Baby’s Needs: Post Cards from the Heart


Nearing the end of my unit on infants, I was in search of a creative idea that encompassed all that I had covered in regard to meeting the needs of babies. Below is the project I developed, assigned my students and then crossed my fingers. I’m never sure how a totally new project is going to be received, not to mention what kind of work I will get in return. Needless to say I should not have worried as my students, were not only completely engaged, but turned out some creative, well written post cards!

MyPlate Fairy Tale Flip Books for Children using Flip Snack


The goal of this assignment was for students to write a story or fairy tale that encouraged young children to eat all of the food groups on MyPlate. I really wanted this to be student driven so I introduced the project, shared an example and let the creativity flow. My role was to walk around, monitor progress, address any technology issues and answer questions as they came up. It was kind of like a flipped classroom, although I’ve never technically done this. Anyway, the results were very impressive and students were highly engaged for the entire project!

Vygotsky’s Learning Theory & Instructional Videos


The first time I ever heard of Lev Vygotsky’s theory of cognitive development, I wondered how I would ever teach it to my child development class and have it make sense. Initially, it was a very simple lesson. Over the years it has evolved, but still I felt it needed something. Then, last year Laurie Lee, a FACS teacher from Glasgow High School in Glasgow, Missouri shared an idea she had on teaching preschool aged children how to do things by having her students create instructional videos. Immediately, the light bulb went off in my head and I knew I could tie this to Lev Vygotsky’s theory. So, below you will find the merging of these two lessons. Laurie says she and her classes loved this activity, both because the videos turned out great and anytime students have an opportunity to work with the preschool children it’s always a lot of fun!

Ideas for Teaching about Gender Stereotypes


Lately there’s been a lot of commercials and public service announcements about gender stereotypes. Any teacher wanting to incorporate this topic into their curriculum would most likely want to choose the best ideas and pull together their own version of a lesson. With that in mind, I thought it would be a good idea to pull together a variety of resources I’ve found that I thought we be great to use when teaching about this topic. However, if you have a unique way of teaching this topic or just a great activity or project, I’d love for you to share it at

Children & Crafts: Creating Flower Crafts with Snapguide


As a child I loved doing arts and crafts and still do today! As a parent I loved doing them with my own children! Crafts have hidden benefits that many don’t realize, not only in creating them, but also in teaching others how to create them. This lesson helps students break down their ideas into easy to understand steps using Snapguide technology to help them convey directions and visuals to create a flower!

Handling Temper Tantrums


The bane of every parent or caregiver is the temper tantrum! Temper tantrums are a normal part of every child’s behavior during the terrible two’s and trying three’s! So, how do we handle them when they occur? Let students build an arsenal of techniques as they explore what’s appropriate and inappropriate in the lesson and activity below.

Hidden Hazards & Make Safe Happen App Review

This year my school decided to implement Professional Learning Communities, focusing on the Reading Apprenticeship model, in addition to using the Collins Writing program that was initiated last year. We have also been encouraged to be the “guide on the side” and have more student centered or directed learning taking place in our classrooms. With all of this in mind, my mission was to develop a couple of activities to try out the concepts in my child development class. A friend had just shared the Parenting magazine article on Hidden Hazards with me and it seemed like it would be a good fit. I’m glad to say I had very engaged students who were sharing, brainstorming, using technology and writing! Mission accomplished!