Mind & Brain Parent Training Can Improve Kids' Behavior An interactive parent-training programcan stamp out behavior problemsin kids—and abuse from parents By Ingrid Wickelgren THIS IS A PREVIEW. Buy this digital issue or subscribe to access the full article. Already a subscriber or purchased this issue? Sign In When a parent repeats what her child says, she lets the child lead, encourages conversation, and shows she is engaged. Such mimicry improves the parent-child relationship—and, ultimately, the child's behavior. PJ LOUGHRAN On a Thursday in early August, psychologist Steven Kurtz is preparing one of his clients, Maria, for a therapy session. A calm, cheerful woman with long, dark hair, Maria has been in training at the Child Mind Institute in New York City with her six-year-old son, Ryan (not his real name), for months to ready him for this day. Her goal seems simple: to coax Ryan to obey a simple command. But Ryan does not take direction well. Maria and Ryan are undertaking a brand of parent training called Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT) designed to correct oppositional behavior in children. Until now, Maria has let Ryan pick their activities. Today, for the first time, Maria will choose something to do. THIS IS A PREVIEW. Buy this digital issue or subscribe to access the full article. Already a subscriber or purchased this issue? Sign In Buy Digital Issue $5.99 Add To Cart Browse all subscription options! Subscribe ADVERTISEMENT Scientific American is a trademark of Scientific American, Inc., used with permission © 2015 Scientific American, a Division of Nature America, Inc. All Rights Reserved.