Why Motor Skills Matter


"This is an important book for parents as well as physical and occupational therapists, other pediatric health providers, and teachers of young children. It offers critical insights and the hope for a bright developmental future that all children, parents, and the professionals who serve them need." --T.B. Brazelton, M.D., Founder, Brazelton Touchpoints Center, Boston Children's Hospital
"In this era of smartphones, tablets, and narrowly focused academic standards and testing, Tara Liddle's book is more urgently needed than ever. Why Motor Skills Matter shows how children use their senses and bodies to explore their environments and what we can do to protect and strengthen this critical pathway for their development, health, and learning." --Joshua Sparrow, M.D., Director, Brazelton Touchpoints Center, Boston Children's Hospital


"Everything we can learn about our children makes us better parents. This book is an excellent guide to child development and what we can do to help our children grow up confidently, competently, and 'in sync' with the world." --Carol Stock Kranowitz, M.A., Author of The Out-of -Sync Child: Recognizing and Coping with Sensory Processing Disorder


"Why Motor Skills Matter is a book that should be on every parent's mandatory reading list. I cannot recommend this book highly enough." --Julie Ross, M.A., Owner and Executive Director at Parenting Horizons, Author of How to Hug a Porcupine


"The accessibility of Tara Liddle's Why Motor Skills Matter is what keeps so many folks coming back to her text time and time again. --Christen M. Russo, M.D., Assistant Professor of Orthopedic Surgery; Columbia University Irving Medical Center; New York-Presbyterian/Brooklyn Methodist Hospital


"Today, when children are moving less than ever, but the purpose of ideal development remains unchanged, this book is more relevant than ever before! Having a baby shower? You're getting this book from me!!" --Liesa M. Persaud, PT, DPT, PCS, CKTP


"It's time to help children feel good about themselves from the inside out. Why Motor Skills Matter will do exactly that." --Dr. Ron Taffel, Author of Childhood Unbound


"Why Motor Skills Matter is certain to become an integral part of the literature on child development and, more importantly, a staple on every parent's shelf." --Susan E. Swedo, M.D., Fellow, American Academy of Pediatrics; Chief, Pediatrics and Developmental Neuropsychiatry Branch, NIMH. NIH, DHHS, and coauthor of Is It "Just a Phase"?


"Why Motor Skills Matter presents a thorough and terrifically useful synopsis of motor development in infants and young children." --Lise Eliot, Ph.D, Professor of Neuroscience, The Chicago Medical School, and author of What's Going on in There? How the Brain and Mind Develop in the First Five Years of Life


"I highly recommend Why Motor Skills Matter for the parent of every child, and I assure those parents that they will not only enjoy each chapter but will be far more informed about the development of their children by the end of the book." --John M. Driscoll, Jr., M.D., Former Chairman; Department of Pediatrics, Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons;


From Publishers Weekly

Pediatric physical therapist Liddle's commonsense guide to early childhood development advocates a body-centered approach to development for unsure parents, or nervous parents-to-be. The author supports her thesis-"that mild deficiencies in physical development could have a major impact on self-esteem and well-being"-with four thorough sections: an overview of the newborn sensory system; first year of development; motor skills and language through age five; and a final part on children with "special considerations" (e.g., preemies and babies with low muscle tone, sensory issues or orthopedic conditions). Liddle's non-technical prose explains infants' sensory systems (vestibular for balance, proprioceptive for spatial location and tactile for touch) and the importance of ensuring they work in harmony. The "ability to utilize our senses... to absorb information, sort it out, and then respond to it" defines Liddle's therapeutic specialty, sensory integration. She stresses that the quality of a baby's progression from belly play to sitting, crawling and creeping, is more important than the timing of these milestones, and she makes a compelling case for the connection between a newborn's muscle tone and his or her cognitive development and ultimate emotional and social success. Not another trend to promote exceptional babies, Liddle's sensible, unpreachy advice draws on solid orthopedic science to back up the relationship between physical movement and learning. In addition to sidebars on toys, and line drawings, lists of source materials, a bibliography and an index enhance this well-informed handbook.

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