Kathy is the Stanley and Debra Lefkowitz Faculty Fellow in Psychology at Temple University and is a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution.  Director of Temple University’s Infant Language Laboratory, Kathy is the recipient of the Simms/Mann Whole Child Award, the AERA Outstanding Public Communication for Education Research Award, American Psychological Association’s Bronfenbrenner Award for Lifetime Contribution to Developmental Psychology in the Service of Science and Society, the American Psychological Association’s Award for Distinguished Service to Psychological Science, the American Psychological Society’s James McKeen Cattell Award for “a lifetime of outstanding contributions to applied psychological research,” the Society for Research in Child Development Distinguished Scientific Contributions to Child Development Award, and the Temple University Great Teacher Award and University Eberman Research Award.
Guided play advances cognitive skills like language and reading, as well as social skills like emotion regulation.
In the last 20 years, advances in the sciences of infant development have allowed us to view the processes of early word learning for the first time.
Investment in early childhood is a moral imperative that also saves society from 7 to 14 dollars for every dollar spent.
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DR. KATHY HIRSH-PASEK

Kathy is the Stanley and Debra Lefkowitz Faculty Fellow in Psychology at Temple University and is a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution.  Director of Temple University’s Infant Language Laboratory, Kathy is the recipient of the Simms/Mann Whole Child Award, the AERA Outstanding Public Communication for Education Research Award, American Psychological Association’s Bronfenbrenner Award for Lifetime Contribution to Developmental Psychology in the Service of Science and Society, the American Psychological Association’s Award for Distinguished Service to Psychological Science, the American Psychological Society’s James McKeen Cattell Award for “a lifetime of outstanding contributions to applied psychological research,” the Society for Research in Child Development Distinguished Scientific Contributions to Child Development Award, and the Temple University Great Teacher Award and University Eberman Research Award.

  • “Beyond School Hours 2021” – Virtual Conference, Foundations, February 17-19, 2021

    Join Foundations, Inc.’s Beyond School Hours 2021 National Education Conference online and watch Kathy’s keynote speech on February 17, 2021! REGISTER HERE…

  • Placemaking Winner of the Real Play City Challenge!

    We’re excited that Playful Learning Landscapes was selected as one of the Placemaking Winners of the Real Play City Challenge based on the Urban Play Framework! CHECK IT OUT HERE….

  • “Finding Joy through Playful Learning” – Virtual Conference, February 3-4 & 9-10, 2021

    Join Playful Learning Landscapes Action Network, Playful Pittsburgh Collaborative, and Trying Together for a virtual conference bringing together educators, researchers, policymakers, and practitioners to discuss and share best practices to support children and families in learning through play. REGISTER HERE!…

  • Watch the Brookings Webinar: “A new path to education reform: The next chapter on 21st century skills”

    On January 13, 2021, the Center for Universal Education (CUE) hosted a webinar to discuss a path to educational reform. Following a brief overview of the recent Policy 2020 report “A new path to education reform: Playful learning promotes 21st-century skills in schools and beyond” by Brookings Fellow Helen Hadani, a panel of experts, including Kathy, shared their various perspectives on how to remake education, foster educational equity, and prepare students for a better future. WATCH THE WEBINAR HERE….

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So honored that @playfullearng got to be one of the winners of the #RealPlayCityChallenge based on the #UrbanPlayhttps://t.co/OUDRMkoTeB
Here's to new beginnings!!! And a shout-out to #Delaware (Roberta's home state) ! #inaguration2021

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Kathy's work appears in news publications around the world.
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Some of Kathy's books include:

  • User’s Manual for the Quick Interactive Language Screener™ (QUILS™)
    A measure of Vocabulary, Syntax, and Language Acquisition Skills in Young Children
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  • Becoming Brilliant:
    What Science Tells Us About Raising Successful Children
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  • A Mandate for Playful Learning in Preschool:
    Presenting the Evidence
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  • Celebrate the Scribble:
    Appreciating Children's Art
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  • Play = Learning:
    How Play Motivates and Enhances Children's Cognitive and Social-Emotional Growth
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View Complete List of Publications >

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Kathy is a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, where she contributes articles to her Blog on a regular basis.

Kathy's Brookings Institution Blog