Dr. Rebecca Hains

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Media literacy for preschoolers: Explaining how the media work

Media literacy is a concept that’s often taught in schools–though not often enough, in my opinion. Being media literate means having the ability to think critically about media content, as well as an understanding of how the media work. It…

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Disney-Pixar’s Brave: Critiquing the criticisms

I saw Brave the day it debuted in theaters, and I’m glad that Merida is a different kind of princess–one who can be read as a critique of both the trope that princesses are passive and the trend to tell…

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For Father’s Day, shared experiences make the best gifts

When it comes to selecting great gifts for kids, it’s important to gift experiences, not just toys. After all, studies show that experiences make people happier than objects do: Objects break, become outdated, or pale in comparison to superior items, and the…

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Practicing slightly subversive parenting: Toddlers and gender

Gender representations in popular kids’ storybooks make me sigh. Books based on TV programs and movies seem among the worst offenders; yet they’re inescapably popular. To manage them, I do two things: First, I keep movie- and tv-based books to…

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