How can the concepts of culture and context be incorporated into accounts of development and research on development? This volume of "New Directions for Child Development" introduces approaches based on the notion of cultural practices; these are viewed as meaningful actions that occur routinely in everyday life, are widely shared by members of the group, and carry normative expectations about the way things should be done. To illustrate use of the concept, four of the chapters describe specific research studies, drawn from anthropology, psychology, and sociology. These are framed by a general introduction to the concept of cultural practices and a commentary on its connection to the concepts, such as activity and activity systems. This is the 67th issue of the journal series "New Directions for Child Development".