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Home » What Is The Most Important Influence On Child Development: Tom Weisner (Transcript)

What Is The Most Important Influence On Child Development: Tom Weisner (Transcript)

Here is the transcript and summary of Tom Weisner’s talk titled “What Is The Most Important Influence On Child Development” @ TEDxUCLA conference.

Listen to the audio version here:


Tom Weisner – Author

What is the most important thing in child development? This is something we should really care about because we all want to improve the well-being and the lives of kids.

So what are the most important things in child development? I’d like you to help me to get started.

So think of a child. Really do it. Like bring up a child in your mind’s eye, close your eyes, think of that child. You got it? Now, if you could do something, the most important thing, the influence, the life of that child, what would you do?

When I’ve asked this question to Western audiences, there’s a whole litany of important things. Provide attachment security, good nutrition, provide it with good playmates, stimulation, lots of stimulation, perhaps a religious or spiritual pathway, which will be important to the child. Provide a trust fund so that the child will have resources as it grows older.

Some of the parents in the audience mentioned other things like, it’s the toilet training, just get me through the toilet training, or get my kid to sleep, or they bring the homework sheets home and then they get lost. So there are a lot of things that we think of as important things in child development. And although all those things are important, and of course there’s no one thing that would be the only important thing, none of these, in my view, are the most important thing.

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