Tovah P. Klein, Ph.D.

Director, Barnard College Center for Toddler Development and Associate Professor of Psychology

At the Barnard College Center for Toddler Development (Toddler Center), Professor Klein and her research team study children's social and emotional development, the influence of parents on children's development and the experience of being a parent in the early years. In the parenting work, the research focuses on mothers' and fathers' transition to parenthood and on work and family issues.

The research looks at the ways parents negotiate the challenges of work and parenthood, particularly for mothers, but also for fathers. Another line of research focuses on the impact of trauma on young children and their families, looking at children who were direct witnesses to the events of 9/11. A newer study examines toddler play -- how toddlers communicate through play and use play to process and learn about emotions, from everyday/typical situations (i.e., separation) to stressful (i.e., a new baby; emergency room visits) and traumatic situations.

She has served as a developmental advisor for Sesame Street and is on the advisory boards for Room to Grow, Rawanda Educational Assistance Project and NYC Voices of Childhood. Her advice has appeared in The New York Times, Redbook, Parents and countless other publications. She is the mother of three boys in lives in New York City.

HOW TODDLERS THRIVE: What Parents Can Do Today for Children Ages 2-5 to Plant the Seeds of Lifelong Success, published by Touchstone, is her first book.

Visit her online at

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