Basic Information


Have you heard the latest advice about parenting?

Of course you have. From experts to other parents, people are always ready to give you parenting advice. Parenting tips, parents’ survival guides, dos, don’ts, shoulds, and shouldn’ts—new ones come out every day.

But with so much information available, how can anyone figure out what really works? How do you know whose advice to follow? Isn’t parenting just common sense anyway? How can the experts know what it’s like to be a parent in a real house?

What’s a parent to do?

Try RPM3—a no-frills approach to parenting from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD).

For over 30 years, the NICHD has conducted and supported research in parenting and child development. We’ve talked to experts, parents, and children. We’ve collected statistics, identified myths, a...

Fast Facts: Learn! Fast!

What is the RPM3 approach to parenting?

  • The first thing you need to know is that there are no perfect parents.
  • Parenting isn't all-or-nothing.
  • Successes and mistakes are part of being a parent.
  • Start to think about the type of parent you want to be.
  • RPM3 stands for:
    • Responding to your child in an appropriate manner.
    • Preventing risky behavior or problems before they arise.
    • Monitoring your child's contact with his or her surrounding world.
    • Mentoring your child to support and encourage desired behaviors.
    • Modeling your own behavior to provide a consistent, positive example for your child.
  • By including responding, preventing, monitoring, mentoring, and modeling in your day-to-day parenting activities, you can become a more effective, consistent, active, and attentive parent.
  • Learn how to apply the RPM3 approach if your child is:

For more information

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Child & Adolescent Development: Overview
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