David Elkind

"When we are polite to children, we show in the most simple and direct way possible that we

value them as people and care about their feelings." -Dr. David Elkind

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David Elkind was born on March 11th, 1931. He currently lives in Cape Cod with his wife Debbie Elkind. He is the father of three sons and now has four grandchildren. During his free time, he likes to go sailing, work in the garden, as well as work with pottery. He has done extensive research in the areas of perceptual, cognitive, and social development. (KM)

1. Who is he?

  • David Elkind is an American author and speaker. He has written several books and he also contributes to other article and book chapters. He travels around the U.S., Canada and abroad to give lectures about his beliefs. (KM)
  • He is currently a Professor at Tufts University in Massachusetts. He also co-hosts a series on Lifetime, Kids These Days. (SP)

2. What did he believe?

  • He strongly believes in creating good relationships between children and adults and by showing students love, support and care, it will help them to be more successful. He believes that the adult should be committed to the child and the child should be loyal. (KM)
  • Character Education is a very important aspect to him, which is everything you do that influences the character of the kids you teach. (KM)
  • Character education is not just the education of the child but helping the student learn about bullying and preparing them for furthering their education. (SP)

“character education is the deliberate effort to help people understand, care about, and act upon core ethical values.”

3. Why is he important today?

  • Dr. Elkind's work focuses on healthy development. He helps parents see that pushing their child to learn earlier does not give the child abundant time to have the experiences necessary to learn in a meaningful way.(SP)
  • He applies his research to practical problems, showing everyone how his research applies to education.(SP)

4. What are some practical ways to apply his approach in a classroom?

  • As a teacher I can allow the students to "play" while learning. Although the students still receive a well-balanced education they have time that is not relegated just to academics. (SP)
  • Create contracts with your students so that they know what is expected of them but they also know that they are being motivated and cared for during all learning experiences. (KM)

Three Basic Contracts

1. Responsibility-freedom
  • Adults sensitively monitor the child's level of intellectual, social, and emotional development in order to provide the appropriate freedoms and opportunities for the exercise of responsibility (KM)

2. Achievement-support
  • Adults expecting age-appropriate achievements and providing the necessary personal and material support to help children reach the expected goals (KM)

3. Loyalty-Commitment
  • Emphasizes adults' expectations that children will respond with loyalty and acceptance of adults because of the time, effort, and energy adults give (KM)

Contracts are often violated by adults and this causes stress for children. Contracts are constantly changing but they must never change in response to adults' needs. They are only to be changed and improved as a result of the children maturing or their personal and cognitive skills changing. (KM)

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5. Citations





<a href="http://psychology.jrank.org/pages/210/David-Elkind.html">David Elkind</a>