Rube Goldberg lives on

When my son was little, he had a favorite toy which was a set of tubes and various other pieces which could be put together to make different forms of whistles or wind instruments. But he never used the toy that way. He would string the tubes together on a piece of cord or use PlayDoh© to … Read more

To School, or Not to School

image of boy holding book and wearing face mask with text in upper left "back to school, the new normal"

Everyone with any connection to students is trying to decide whether to go back to school, or not. There is no “one right answer,” but here are some of the factors to consider. Things you can’t control: What do we know about how the virus affects children? The latest research indicates that many children are … Read more

Sex versus gender

image of brain drawing at top, with finger pointing to it saying gender is here, finger pointing down below it, saying not here

This semester I’m teaching a course in the Psychology of Human Sexuality. I’ve discovered that very few of my students know anything about the basics and biology of sex. So, we start with a comprehensive course in sex education. From the very beginning, I point out that there is a difference between sex and gender, … Read more

Giving kindness

black block with white text give without remembering and receive without forgetting - quote by Elizabeth Bibesco

It’s the time of year when many of us are remembering those who have held special places in our lives. We send out cards to people we’re only in touch with once a year, often accompanied very often with a letter listing triumphs and tragedies, bringing these acquaintances up to date with what our immediate … Read more

Boys will be boys

two boys scuffling - illustration by Frances Tipton Hunter

How many times have we said, when looking at our boys jumping around, wrestling on the grass, or shouting at each other to do something, “Oh, well, boys will be boys.” We understand that the behavior is typical of boys, that no one taught them to do it, and it usually does not end well … Read more