The Latest Crop of Child Development Texts: Competent But Not Exciting

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Abstract

Originally published in Contemporary Psychology: APA Review of Books, 1978, Vol 23(11), 865–868. Reviews the books, Child Development. 2nd ed by Sueann Robinson Ambron (1977); Growing Up: A Study of Children by Janice T. Gibson (1978); Infancy & Childhood: Development & Its Contexts by Barbara M. Newman and Philip R. Newman (1978); Infants: Development and Relationships. 2nd ed by Mollie S. Smart and Russell C. Smart (1978); Preschool Children: Development and Relationships. 2nd ed by Mollie S. Smart and Russell C. Smart (1978); School-Age Children: Development and Relationships. 2nd ed by Mollie S. Smart and Russell C. Smart (1978); and Adolescents: Development and Relationships. 2nd ed by Mollie S. Smart, Russell C. Smart, and Laura S. Smart (1978). This set of books taken together, gives an overview of the important topics in the field without being so broad as to lose depth. Particularly strong are the coverage of developmental principles, physical and motor development, cognitive development (especially Piaget's view of it), creativity, and the contest for influence between parent and peer. More disappointing is the discussion of topics in the social-emotional area. Examples of more inadequately covered topics include newer research in child rearing, prosocial behavior, sex-role development, communication skills, self-esteem, fatherhood, and the outside (the family) society. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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