Shay Bilchik, Administrator April 1999

Family Strengthening Series Preventing Violence the Problem-Solving Way

Background and History

Parent Research

Raising a Thinking Child: The Parent Interventions

Five-Year Longitudinal Study


Guide to Implementation

Policy Implications

For Further Information



Points of view or opinions expressed in this document are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of OJJDP or the U.S. Department of Justice.

The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention is a component of the Office of Justice Programs, which also includes the Bureau of Justice Assistance, the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the National Institute of Justice, and the Office for Victims of Crime.


From the Administrator

It is virtually impossible to catalog the innumerable contributions that loving parents make to the healthy development of their children. Clearly, the development of skills that enable them to master the lessons of daily living and that enhance their capability to solve interpersonal problems is high on the list.

The desirability of engaging in thoughtful reflection before acting is self-evident, but the nature and quality of such thought processes are also critical. By strengthening the capacity of children to solve problems that may lead to violence or other socially undesirable behaviors, we hope to reduce their occurrence.

Fortunately, more than two decades of research have identified specific interpersonal cognitive problem-solving skills that relate to high-risk behaviors. This Bulletin describes their use by Raising a Thinking Child, a primary prevention program for children ages 4 to 7 and their parents, through its "I Can Problem Solve" curriculum.

Parents are the first teachers of every child. That is true whether the lessons learned are social, emotional, or academic. By teaching their children to think first and to think constructively, parents can contribute to preventing violence -- the problem-solving way.

Shay Bilchik


NCJ 172847