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Parents favor the first-born, putting sibs at risk

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Reading, eating dinner together and talking are "quality time" activities, according to study author and Cornell University Ph.D. student Joe Price. Watching television - even "educational programs" - does not count as a beneficial activity. (Courtesy of Andrew Newman)

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Bobby Morrison, 5, performs at a family show orchestrated by his older sister, Katie, 7. One reason younger siblings may receive less attention from their parents than their older siblings is because their big brothers and sisters can alleviate their parents of some entertainment duties. (Courtesy of Audrey Morrison)

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Katie Morrison, 7, helps her parents take care of her 5-year-old twin brother and sister by organizing musical performances, dramatic stage productions and seasonal treasure hunts. As a result, her parents have some more free time but her younger siblings don't receive as much quality parent-child time. (Courtesy of Audrey Morrison)

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Audrey Morrison, of Glenview, Ill., says she struggles to spend one-on-one time with her 5-year-old twins and knows she has given more attention to her 7-year-old daughter over the years. Here, Audrey steals some precious moments alone with Maggie, 5, during a vacation at Martha's Vineyard. (Courtesy of Audrey Morrison)

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A new study says parents favor their first-born at the expense of siblings, who face bigger chances of dropping out of school and getting arrested.