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Welcome to my website.  I'm a research professor at Boston College, in Psychology and Neuroscience, whose recent work focuses primarily on children's natural ways of learning and the value of play from an evolutionary perspective. I am still building this site, but it already includes pages where you can download some of my academic articles, find out about books I've authored, and view videos of some of my talks. 

I'm on the right. The cute one on the left is my brother Steve. Our grandmother dressed us up for this. Tinker Toys then were what LEGO are today.

I invite you also to follow me on facebook, view my blog Freedom to Learn at Psychology Today, and take a look at the websites of the nonprofit organizations Let Grow and Alliance for Self-Directed Education, which I helped to start.

What's New?


MY MOST RECENT ARTICLE Decline in independent activity as cause of decline in children's mental wellbeing: Summary of the evidence [This 2023 article published in the Journal of Pediatrics presents multiple lines of evidence for the thesis that a decline in children's opportunities for independent activity is a major cause of the well-documented decline in their emotional wellbeing. Click on title to see]. 

REVISION OF MY OXFORD RESEARCH ENCYCLOPEDIA CHAPTER  Self-Directed Education—unschooling and democratic schooling

MY NEW SUBSTACK SERIES  PLAY MAKES US HUMAN:  Letters About the Roles of Play in Human Evolution, Child Development, Culture, and Daily Life. Click here to see the most recent post and subscribe.

Boston Globe Article 4/22/2024

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