Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Family meals

According to this new study, eating breakfast and dinner more frequently with family members was unrelated to cognitive and behaviorial outcomes for kids from kindergarten to 8th grade. A parents-are-everything model would predict that family meals are important since it is a time when parents can encourage and instruct kids about school and behavior. (It is an opportunity for bonding as well. One of my fat friends associates food with his mom's love.)

My students absolutely refuse to believe that parenting has little effect on a child's IQ and personality. Citing research doesn't matter. The idea is repugnant to them. Americans hate genes.

For those of you who are more open: don't decide to not have kids because work takes up too much of your time. The truth is, you ain't that important. (Your genes are, on the other hand.)

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Maybe Americans are congenitally disposed to believe that hard work and ingenuity can fix most problems. IE, to hate genes, to think that having family dinners will fix what ails us.

Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

Parents direct influence doesn't matter, but peers do; and parents can influence who the peers are by influencing where they live and what school they go to.
Robert Hume

pzed said...

For those wavering on kids, don't decide to have them for the sake of society either. Your marginal contribution won't matter if the rest of society is headed in a downward genetic spiral.

The only thing you will be guaranteeing is that your descendants are born into a world that's worse than the one your parents birthed you into.

Anonymous said...

HBD: "IQ is genetic"

If IQ is genetic, it should not change much throughout a person's life

IQ, which is genetic, is said to be correlated with GRE scores. In effect making GRE performance somewhat genetic.

OK.....Then why the hell do most graduate schools request GRE scores from the most recent 5 years. I mean, if GRE is a proxy for IQ, it shouldn't change, should it?

Anonymous said...

IQ is partly genetic. That's the conclusion of the science at present.

The Reluctant Apostate said...

OK.....Then why the hell do most graduate schools request GRE scores from the most recent 5 years. I mean, if GRE is a proxy for IQ, it shouldn't change, should it?

Presumably, one reason is to maintain a comparable cohort. It's possible for the actual nominal scores of the test to drift from year to year and if you allow test results from to far distant of years, you begin to compare apples to oranges.

TGGP said...

No citation to Bryan Caplan?

Pravo Jazdy said...

"If IQ is genetic, it should not change much throughout a person's life"
Yeah - just like height. Or hair colour. Or wrinkiling.
Oh, wait...

Luke Lea said...

"My students absolutely refuse to believe that parenting has little effect on a child's IQ and personality."

But an enormous impact on how happy they were.