The Age of the Diva: Fallbacks in Dance and Pageants

Honey Boo Boo's mom dressed up as her, picture from Jezebel article

Watching Dance Moms and Toddlers & Tiaras is always interesting for me– both because the shows are often entertaining (if only in a horrifying way, like the recent T&T episode that featured Heaven, a modern day Violet Beauregarde with her incessant gum chewing, and Honey Boo Boo child and her TLC crossover extreme couponing momma […]


Are after-school math centers really worth the money?: Parents and education experts do the math. (From The Boston Globe Magazine)

Krishna Kumurappan at Kumon, Aram Boghosian for The Boston Globe

A feature story I wrote on afterschool math enrichment centers appeared in today’s The Boston Globe Magazine. You can read it online (and see additional links below) by clicking here! I researched and wrote this in the last month or so of my pregnancy, so joke that now I know which math programs my son […]


Sex, Sexual Abuse, and Sports

Don Peters working with young, female gymnasts in 1996; Ana Venegas, The OC Register

Given the recent, multiple sexual abuse scandals in sports (from Penn State to Syracuse, and now even the Amateur Athletic Union) it’s not surprising that this past weekend two major newspapers published stories on the ways in which sports can provide a breeding ground for pedophiles (click here to read The New York Times’ take, […]


UPDATED! What happens when you are first-time parents who study competition and education?

BabyMath, Jenn's Web Design

ETA: On January 4th, 2012 we welcomed our son, Carston, into the world. Two days later, his daddy’s research on value-added teachers appeared on the front page of The New York Times. Coincidence?! Everyone is doing well and no one has been fired yet! I was correct (per original post below) that this work would […]


Triumph and Tragedy in Scholastic Chess

With the Bryant twins in 2009 at my dissertation defense

I have a soft spot for scholastic chess. In 2005 I started studying chess as part of my dissertation research (which is forthcoming as Playing to Win: Raising Kids in a Competitive Culture). One of the things I loved the most about the chess scene is the diversity of people who meet and engage over […]


NECN Appearance on Andover Sports Hazing and Parents’ Right to Question Coaching Credentials

NECN logo

In the aftermath of a hazing incident at a summer basketball camp, two Andover High School students have been expelled, the franchised basketball camp (Hoop Mountain) has been kicked off the college campus where the camp was held, and a legal investigation is underway as well. I appeared on NECN’s The Morning Show (NECN is […]


Developing the All-Around Child (from

Boston Magazine image of overparenting by Larry Ruppert

I was honored to participate in an “online roundtable” panel of experts over at Boston Magazine related to overparenting.  The question I was asked to answer, along with four experts in psychology and social work, was “Are We Overparenting Our Kids?” This roundtable was tied to a feature story written by Katheine Ozment called “Welcome […]


In the Wake of the Sandusky Scandal, A Call for Youth Coaching Certifications (from HuffPo Parents)

Jerry Sandusky mugshot

CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL ARTICLE ON THE HUFFINGTON POST PARENTS The arrest of Jerry Sandusky, a former college football coach and community volunteer who worked with children, on forty counts of child molestation of young boys has shocked and frightened many parents. As well it should. At the end of every weekday millions […]


One Dream Gives Rise to Another: Reviewing Rise (documentary on 1961 figure skating crash)

Image of Rise DVD

This past September a horrible plane crash in Russia killed an entire elite hockey team.  Over 40 people died as a result of simple pilot error in a great sports tragedy. In 1961 the figure skating community experienced a similar—but in many ways even bigger—tragedy.  The entire United States figure skating team (including athletes, coaches, […]


Pas de Deux: A Review of Bunheads and Audition (from The Huffington Post Books)

Bunheads, Sophie Flack, Cover from Amazon

CLICK HERE TO READ THIS ON THE HUFFINGTON POST BOOKS! It’s no wonder that young adult readers are fascinated by the world of competitive ballet. Even if they aren’t dancers themselves, teens are drawn in by the all-consuming dance world (made more intriguing by the general absence of parents) and the focus on romance as […]