We offer these links in support of early childhood development:



"Schools, Skills, and Synapses" is a deep dive to gain understanding of the science of why we must SQUARE the PYRAMID so every child has the best start in life! In 15 short minutes you will have an incredible understanding of the reason STEPi exists and what motivates our mission.


Read Right from the Start
Association for Childhood Education International
Fractus Learning
Early Childhood Education Degrees
UKY - If you’re an educator or fascinated by education, motivation, and practical philosophy, then you might like this simple site. UKY is a fantastic resource for quotes by educators. I like to read a series of quotes and contemplate them. Give it a test drive.

Center for Healthy Minds


Kids, Would You Please Start Fighting? - Lead in Creativity doesn’t come from agreement, it comes from good-natured quarreling. It’s time we teach our children that.

SAMR as a Framework for Moving Towards Education 3.0 - With 48,000+ SlideShare views, I am not the first one to find this 61 page PowerPoint presentation fascinating, thought-provoking, and educational. If you are an educator or a parent who wants a useful framework of the questions and concepts you could be struggling with, this is a great place to start.

How to Get Your Mind to Read - There is a lot written about "reading" as a skill. Reading builds on what we know, so it is not just "be a good reader" and you're all set. You need to have comprehension, and that takes reading information-rich materials. This is a thoughtful scientific article that anyone interested in literacy and education should review. Comprehension depends on what you already know. Let’s start there.

Is Your Child Lying to You? That’s Good - If i say to you “DID YOU EAT THAT BISCUIT? If you did, I will beat you!” Do you think you are going to get a “yes” from a 3-year-old? Do you think you are going to get a “yes” from a 30-year-old? How we parents can set our children up to be liars. This article on parenting is a great read for all parents who wish to raise successful, loving, virtuous, happy kids. Kids who know how to deceive are smarter and better adjusted.

Why the Moral Argument for Non-Violence Matters - Peace and nonviolent conversation gets “lost in translation” so to speak. This is an essay that really communicates how I feel about nonviolence and peace as a spiritual practice (although as a SPIRITUAL PRACTICE is not how the author explains it). He calls it a principled approach. A highlight of the essay is: So, violence can be an effective tool to protect yourself and others against a threat, and it can be used to express outrage about injustice. There is great value in both.Yet violence is also limited in one very important way, and that is that violence can never create relationships.

Violence can never get you closer to reconciliation, closer to King’s “beloved community,” the reconciled world with justice for all people. And that is perhaps the most significant difference between a principled nonviolent approach and an approach using violence or nonviolence that is strictly strategic. The goals are different.

What's the Worst Kind of Praise You Can Give? - Years ago, I wrote an article entitled, “Excellence is not Competitive,” after watching some 4-H girls on our humble, very low budget, 4-H team cry when they lost in horse competitions. The girls had fun, they loved the tournaments, they loved sharing their love of all things horses, so who cares if the girl whose rich parents bought her a beautiful $10,000 horse, a personal [horse] trainer and installed a indoor arena on their estate won over the bow legged glue factory mare, borrowed tack, and rummage sale saddle that the girls on my 4-H team used. It’s about doing your best with what you have, friendship, enjoying your horse and each other.

There’s a wise old saying: “Comparison is the thief of joy.” 

If we really want to help our children succeed, grow into emotionally intelligent, wonderfully happy, inner-directed adults we must praise the activity, and identify and reinforce what we want to continue in our children, and not say, “Wow, that is the best crayon art I have ever seen!!!!!” While this article is about how praise hurts business it is a must read for every parent, caregiver, teacher, coach or individual who wants to use science, research, and common sense to guide her or his actions. Bottom line: We must stop comparisons....

Reading aloud, play, and social-emotional development - Introduction to this study: This is a bit dense for the reader, but is important stuff if you find yourself in an argument with someone about the importance of reading, being connected to, and enjoying time with very young children even for 5 minutes a day. It shows that the connecting with children thru story, reading, experiencing a book together helps to develop the child's brain and emotional intelligence, even helping the child build better self control and focus. I have also placed below this posting an article from the NYT that cites this study.

Reading aloud, spending story reading time with a child, having fun, and playing imaginative games helps children developed their minds, emotional intelligence and also [not surprisingly] helps them deal with emotions like anger and sadness. This is a great article that every caring person that has children in their lives should read. Seems that spending time is the key with helping young children and even for 5 minutes a day it appears there is a benefit.

How Trauma and Resilience Cross Generations - Dr Yehuda is an epigenetic scientist. What I find interesting in this transcript from her “On Being Project” interview is the influence of those people who during pregnancies or are around our children effects their future in so many ways. Dads, Mothers and Caregivers must pay special attention to their own behaviors, habits, thoughts, emotional stresses, and how they handle them, as all that effects the children in their lives. Fascinating interview, worth the time to read it. 

A bit from the interview:

“ON BEING: You quoted this passage from Ezekiel: “The fathers ate sour grapes, and the children’s teeth were set on edge.” / Dr Rachael Yehuda: Right. In the Bible it’s rhetorical. But the idea is that it’s a hard thing to imagine that if your father ate sour grapes, the children’s teeth will be rotted, and yet, [laughs] science is teaching us exactly that.”

Reading To Your Toddler? Print Books Are Better Than Digital Ones - In the most rural of villages, tucked deep in the countryside of Uganda, I witnessed with my own eyes the pure joy of a 3-year-old opening her first book ever. She sat in her mother’s lap, a very young lady in her teens, who could barely write her own name, let alone read. Together, the mother and daughter bonded over just the images in this children’s storybook. They turned the pages together, pointed to different pictures together, and laughed and smiled together. The power of a “book-book” (as they call it in this article) is very real. As is the time spent with your child or your learner, together reading a book.

This Is Your Child’s Brain On Reading - A quick read about the science of reading and what happens to the brain during and after a child reads. Interesting!

Children Won’t Say They Have Anxiety, They Say “My Stomach Hurts!” - As we grow older, we become more self-aware, more educated, more capable of putting our feelings into words. But for young children, this isn’t the case. While they may be far from understanding or knowing they have anxiety or are experiencing depression, they do know they don’t feel quite right. And they’ll find some way to let us know. This quick read explains more about how children will communicate their negative feelings.

DADDY Does It DiFfErenT - With disproportionate statistics showing that boys are “becoming dumber… are more likely to be unhappy… are more violent, intolerant, bigoted, and indifferent to suffering,” it’s about time that men are empowered and encouraged to positively parent in their own styles, in their ways. As author of “Daddy Does It DiFfErenT” and founder of STEPi comments, parenting “is all about perspective, and Dad’s unique viewpoint offers a great counterbalance to Mom’s.”

How Different Kinds of Intelligence Can Help Your Kids Learn - What is your preferred way of learning? Do you connect with words and articles, or images and videos? Perhaps a good strategy to help you remember is through writing, or for others through music or drama. These various forms of learning are referred to as different kinds of intelligences. And just like you have different ways of learning, so does your child or your student. This short article reviews some of the more prevalent intelligences and notes ways to help you identify these in your child or student.

Nurse-Family Partnership: Parental Education and Early Health Result In Better Child Outcomes - Professor James Heckman, a Nobel Laureate and an expert in the economics of human development, recently took a look at a program designed to help strengthen the scaffolding around mothers with their children, from newborn to age two. The results are quite amazing. As a society, we must listen to the research and realize that if we want our children to have long term life success, the time to shower them with parent, societal, and education resources is prior to age six.


Violence - A Family Tradition - Robbyn Peters Bennett, TEDxBellingham. If you are a parent, grandparent, caregiver or just concerned about why our society seems so violent, why drugs and alcohol abuse is out of control and why violence against women and children is a GLOBAL epidemic just watch this video. I wish every parent, teacher, child caregiver could watch it each morning before they got out of bed. Those simple twelve minutes would transform our world. Please right now watch

This is a very good visual tool if you're trying to understand the education systems' shortcomings today. Take a few minutes and enjoy it.

OK, sorry, I have said this before, but If you are going to watch one video on early childhood development this 4 minute video is a must watch.

Parenting For A Peaceful World: Robin Grille 
This is a great video if you like history and want to understand how we got to where we are in the world of childcare and parenting. It is a bit long, so grab a cup of tea, put your laptop on a pillow and sit back and watch it with it friend. I am sure you and your friend will want to pause the video to discuss its content along the way.

Interested in learning about the WHY of parenting with love and respect? Watch this 3 minute video, and then share it! It makes a perfect companion to our Parenting With Love booklet (found at the top of the page).


Raising Girls and Boys by Tracey Curtis
I love this song. It would be a great theme song for each parent.



Recommended children's books:

A Mother for Choco

By: Keiko Kasza

ISBN: 978-0399218415


Old Turtle

By: Douglas Wood

ISBN: 978-0439309080


Any Children’s book by Wayne Dyer:

Unstoppable Me

I Am

Incredible You

No Excuses, and others


Bucket Filling from A to Z                                                                                        

By:  Carol McCloud and Caryn Butzke

ISBN:  978-1938326189


Each Breath a Smile

By:  Sister Susan

ISBN:  978-1-888375220                   


God In Between

By: Sandy Eisenberg Sasso

ISBN:  978-1879045866


Zen Shorts

By:  Jon J Muth

ISBN:  978-0439339117


The Three Questions

By:  Leo Tolstoy

ISBN:  978-0439199964


Horton Hears A Who                       

By:  Dr. Seuss

ISBN:  978-0394800783


Something from Nothing

By:  Phoebe Gilman

ISBN:  978-0590472807

Recommended Parenting books

What Do You Really Want for your Children?

By:  Dr. Wayne W. Dyer

ISBN: 978-0380730476


Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves

By:  Naomi Aldort

ISBN:  978-1887542326


Easy to Love, Difficult to Discipline

By:  Becky A Bailey, Ph.D.

ISBN:  978-0060007751


The Whole-Brain Child

By:  Daniel J Siegel, M.D. & Tina Bryson Ph.D.

ISBN:  978-0553386691


Teaching Meditation to Children

By:  David Fontana & Ingrid Slack

ISBN: 978-1862040182


Parenting with Purpose

By:  Lynda Madison, Ph.D.

ISBN: 978-0836267686


Your Guide to a Happier Family

By: Adele Faber & Elaine Mazlish

ISBN: 978-0380711345


Zero to Five

By:  Tracy Cutchlow

ISBN:  978-0983263364


Unconditional Parenting

By:  Alfie Kohn                     

ISBN:  978-0743487481


The Moral Intelligence of Children

By:  Robert Coles

ISBN: 9780679448112                                   


The Science of Parenting

By:  Margot Sunderland

ISBN:  978-0756618803


Parenting for a Peaceful World

By:  Robin Grille

ISBN:  978-0992360405


Everyday Blessings

By:  Myla & Jon Kabat-Zinn

ISBN:  978-0786883141



By:  Rabbi Rami       

ISBN:  978-0983727019


Parent as Mystic Mystic as Parent

By:  David Spangler

ISBN: 978-1573227780


Born For Love

By:  Maia Szalavitz & Bruce D. Perry, M.D., Ph.D.

ISBN:  978-0061656798        


A Mind At A Time

By:  Mel Levine, M.D.

ISBN:  978-0743202237


Elevating Child Care

By:  Janet Lansbury

ISBN:  978-1499103670

Creative Commons License
This work by STEPi: Squaring the Education Pyramid Institute is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.