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Parenting Book Club Selection
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click here to learn moreKnow Your Parenting Personality: How to Use the Enneagram to Become the Best Parent You Can Be by Janet Levine

Book Description (from Amazon.com): Are you a Helper or an Organizer? A Dreamer or an Entertainer? No matter which of the personality types on the Enneagram you are, this groundbreaking system gives you the vision to see the world as your child sees it-and the power to use this vision to achieve all of your parenting goals. Know Your Parenting Personality helps you discover how your personality motivates the way you behave as a parent and how your child's personality interacts with your own. As an expert on personality, Janet Levine has pioneered a new understanding of the Enneagram based on hundreds of interviews with parents. You'll learn how to recognize your greatest parenting strengths and weaknesses and how to free yourself to become a true guide and mentor to your child. This invaluable parenting guide helps you to establish stronger connections with your child, eliminate self-defeating behavior patterns, deepen parent-child communication, reduce stress in your home, gain self awareness and identify your parenting strengths, as well as support the flowering of your child's personality. 

Click Here to Learn MoreThe Expectant Father: Facts, Tips and Advice for Dads-To-Be
by Armin A. Brott

From Publishers Weekly:  In an expanded and updated version of Brott's 1995 book, the authors once again present a month-by-month guide to pregnancy for the father-to-be. Illustrated throughout with humorous cartoons, the book divides each month of pregnancy into four astute categories: "What She's Going Through" (physical and emotion changes), "What's Going On with the Baby" (physical progress), "What You're Going Through" (physical and emotional changes) and "Staying Involved" (tips on supporting and encouraging the pregnant partner). Since most child-rearing books for men focus primarily on the emotional challenges, it's both refreshing and helpful that these authors include practical advice: recipes, detailed insights into the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 and realistic appraisals of the often very high costs of baby furnishings. Most valuable are the sections on the aspects of birth that make many men squeamish (episiotomies, epidurals and cesarean sections) as well as the post-delivery traumas that they tend to avoid facing (finding childcare, dealing with late-night wake-ups, dressing young children and sex after pregnancy). This is an essential book for all expectant fathers. (June)  Forecast: Brott, a father of two, who has been called "the superdad's superdad" by Time magazine, has written five books on fatherhood and hosts Positive Parenting, a national radio talk show. Considering the increasing number of fathers who want to be actively involved in parenting, this book, with its Father's Day release, should do at least as well as the original, which was a bestseller.  Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

coverGirls Will be Girls: Raising Confident and Courageous Daughters
by JoAnn Deak, Teresa Barker (Contributor) 

From Publishers Weekly: Deak, a speaker, school psychologist and educator, offers a practical and reassuring guide for parents of daughters. The introduction explains why the message of this book is so important: "Girls face an extraordinary challenge in our changing world. They are dealing with more sophisticated issues than ever before, and they are doing so with less adult contact and guidance than ever before. Statistics tell the story of a population at risk both physically and emotionally: one in four girls shows signs of depression. Compared to males, twice as many females attempt suicide...." As any parent of an adolescent or teen daughter knows, even the most straightforward conversation can quickly deteriorate into an argument, tears and frustration on both sides. Deak offers a variety of scenarios along with suggestions for improving the communication: for example, when one girl immediately says she hates her school and the family must move, the parents are sympathetic and schedule visits to some other schools. Within a few weeks, the student has adjusted to the school and in fact chooses to stay there. The approach of "Listening and acting as a sounding board can always be part of the equation...." Deak discusses the differences between fathers and daughters and mothers and daughters and also some of the more common problems faced by teens, such as body image and peer pressure. While there are no instant fixes in these often trying times, this book provides an intelligent and reasonable plan that many parents will want to consider.  Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

Parent School: Simple Lessons from the Leading Experts on Being a Mom and Dad
by Jerry Biederman (Compiler), Lorin Michelle Biederman (Compiler), Penelope Leach (Foreword)

From Publishers Weekly
The authors, who are parents and collaborators on Earth Angels: True Stories and Real People Who Bring Heaven to Earth, have compiled an array of parenting tips and strategies from childcare experts like pediatrician William Sears, psychologist Lawrence Kutner, columnist John Rosemond and other doctors, therapists and writers. The "lessons" are organized into thematic sections from infant care to discipline, values, education and divorce. Some of the contributors offer general strategies, like therapist Jane Nelsen's advice to "take time for training and then don't do things for children that they can do for themselves," or postpartum expert Karen Kleiman's essay on taking the pressure off women to be perfect mothers. Others provide concrete tips: parent education pioneer Nancy Samalin's discipline techniques include making impersonal statements ("books belong on the shelves"), while author Jim Fay offers steps for "tease-proofing" your kids. Though the book offers lessons from numerous respected parenting experts, many readers may feel that the brief entries generally two to five pages are no substitute for in-depth, single-topic volumes or the traditional comprehensive guides by one authority. There are plenty of useful tidbits and eye-catching luminaries here, but the book will probably not be anyone's must-have reference. 
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

Right from Wrong
by Michael Riera, Joseph Di Prisco

Book Description
A wise and reassuring guide to fostering integrity in young children, making them people whom we admire as well as people who are proud of themselves.

Does your child have a conscience? Is he remorseful when caught in a lie? Very high on any wise list of dreams for our children is the hope that they become people of integrity. But integrity is not simply something that happens as a result of unconditional love, healthy genes, or good luck; it emerges, if it does, because parents make it a priority to exercise influence in this arena.

Combining stories of children experiencing the day-to-day struggles of growing up with compassionate, in-depth analysis and pragmatic counsel, Right from Wrong makes nurturing the qualities of integrity tangible to parents and to the others who might be actively involved in guiding a child's moral life. Through the authors' wise and discerning eyes we witness children as they experience loss or sadness, react to sibling rivalries, schoolyard violence, and academic pressures, or even while they interact at the family dinner table. The ways in which parents use listening, praise, discipline, honesty, and consequences to react to these situations reinforces a child's sense of right and wrong; from these choices readers will learn valuable lessons about a parent's power to nurture character and morality in young children.

About the Author
Michael Riera, Ph.D., has worked in education since 1980. He has appeared on the "Oprah Winfrey Show," "Today," "The View," and "48 Hours" and is a correspondent on the CBS "Early Show." Joseph Di Prisco, Ph.D., is an educator and writer who has taught for over twenty years in public, independent, and Catholic schools, middle school through college. Riera and Di Prisco are the co-authors of Field Guide to the American Teenager; they both live in Berkeley, California.

Playful Parenting: A Bold New Way to Nurture Close Connections, Solve Behavior Problems, and Encourage Children's Confidence

by Lawrence J. Cohen

Book Description by Amazon.com

Tag, you're it! In Playful Parenting, Lawrence Cohen demonstrates that parents need to lighten up and spend a few hours giggling with their kids. Play is inherently educational for children, he claims, and parents can learn plenty by examining the games kids play--from peekaboo to practical jokes. 
Cohen is quick to point out that no matter what your child's temperament, she has a playful side. In its most basic form, play is a way to communicate. The author examines, with plenty of hilarious personal anecdotes, the details of play at every age and across genders. From his daughter and a new male friend discussing how "cool" nuclear weapons are and how "gross" a love song is, to a younger child zooming full-speed around a park at a birthday party, we're shown the exuberant truth behind playing: not only is it just plain fun, it can spark a variety of important sensations. One short section discusses the common phenomenon of happy giggling turning instantly to tears. Cohen suggests that "the fun play opens the emotional door to let out the giggles, and a flood of other feelings come pouring out after." Some specific ideas for games are included, and you'll find recommendations for everything from play wrestling to gentle storytelling. One chapter focuses on how to cope with play you don't find enjoyable, and how learning to appreciate these games can lead to surprising emotional insights. This is where Cohen's years of practice come in handy--it may be true that we all play, but not everyone immediately grasps the underlying messages.

Reading Magic : Why Reading Aloud to Our Children Will Change Their Lives Forever

by Mem Fox, Judy Horacek (Illustrator)

Book Description

Bestselling author and literacy expert Mem Fox reveals the incredible emotional and intellectual impact reading aloud to children has on their ability to learn to read.

All parents want and expect their children to learn to read, but few realize they can get their kids on the road to reading long before they start school simply by reading aloud to them every day. With passion and humor, acclaimed author and internationally respected literacy expert Mem Fox tells readers how she herself became aware of the astonishing effects that reading aloud and bonding through books have on very young children.

She speaks of when, where, and why to read aloud and demonstrates how to read aloud to best effect and how to get the most out of a read-aloud session. She walks readers through the three secrets of reading which together make reading possible. She gives guidance on defining, choosing, and finding good books and closes with tips on dealing effectively with the challenges that sometimes arise when children are learning to read.

Filled with practical advice, activities, and inspiring true read-aloud miracles, this book is a must for every parent-and for anyone interested in how children learn to read. black-and-white line art

About the Author

Mem Fox is the author of many popular books for children and adults, including Time for Bed, Sleepy Bears, Possum Magic, and Radical Reflections: Passionate Opinions on Teaching, Learning, and Living. A former professor of literacy education, she lives in Adelaide, South Australia.

Judy Horacek is a well-known Australian cartoonist and writer. In addition to writing and illustrating her own books, she creates cartoons that appear regularly in national magazines. She lives in Dickson, Australia.

Raising Children Who Think for Themselves
by Elisa Medhus M.D.

In Raising Children Who Think for Themselves, physician Elisa Medhus argues that people are taught from childhood to govern themselves through external influences, such as peer groups and mass media, rather than through the inner voice of reason. Being externally directed creates problems for the child, the family, and society at large by encouraging selfishness, self-deceit, and even self-destructive behavior. The author focuses on seven strategies to reverse this trend, including creating a family environment conducive to self-inspiration; teaching children to cultivate effective internal dialogue and positive thinking; encouraging empathy; and showing children how to handle specific external influences. Written in a casual style with real-life quotes and humorous anecdotes, Raising Children Who Think for Themselves combines the practical with the spiritual to help make growing up less painful.

 The Baby Book
by William and Martha Sears (updated edition)

In their excellent (and hefty) resource guide, The Baby Book, attachment parenting specialists William Sears and Martha Sears have provided new parents with their approach to every aspect of baby care basics, from newborns to toddlers. Attachment parenting is a gentle, reasonable approach to parenting that stresses bonding with your baby, responding to her cues, breastfeeding, "wearing" your baby, and sharing sleep with your child. For those parents who worry about negative effects of this attention, the Sears say, "Spoiling is what happens when you leave something (or some person) alone on the shelf--it spoils."

Field Guide to the American Teenager: A Parent's Companion
by Michael Riera and Joseph di Prisco

While the Field Guide to the American Teenager offers titular hope of guidance for the parents of teens, a more accurate title would be "Field Observations of the American Teenager." Authors and educators Michael Riera and Joseph DiPrisco, both Ph.D.s, present insights into many issues that are commonly confronted by teens today: drug use, weapons at school, homosexuality, romance, eating disorders, and race relations, to name a few. But rather than confronting the issues with a laundry list of do's and don'ts, the authors try to help readers understand what teens are thinking and why they act as they do. A discussion of date rape, for instance, doesn't offer any specifics on how to help teens avoid this situation; instead, it looks at why teens choose to engage in the kind of risk-taking behavior that might lead to date rape. "What is frightening about adolescence," they write, "is how close to the margins of irreparable damage and loss teenagers routinely place themselves, how close they come to the shore of no return." These types of observations aren't necessarily reassuring to parents who may be looking for a pat formula to help them navigate the teen years. Many chapters, with titles like "Drinking and Driving" or "Race and Adolescence," have little to do with the named topics. Instead, the authors use such topics as jumping-off points for discussions of underlying issues like trust, communication, self-esteem, integrity, friendship, ambiguity, peer pressure, and responsibility.

Any parent who has raised a teen knows that there is no one formula for success. Field Guide will help parents better understand their teens--but it leaves the hard work of finding parenting strategies that fit a particular teen firmly in the hands of the parent. (Virginia Smyth, Amazon.com)

Toddlers and Pre-Schoolers : Love and Logic Parenting for Early Childhood
by Jim Fay (Reader), Foster Cline (Narrator) Writer & Narrator

A thoroughly engaging follow-up to Fay and Cline’s earlier books.  Here is a rave review from their past work:

John Kennington, Fellowship Today Magazine, December 1990
If you're looking for practical parenting skills, this book is a must. The pages are chock full of tips that you can implement right away...this book is one of the best parenting resources I've seen. Because of what I learned from this book, I've already seen positive changes in my relationship with my son. Don't let this vital resource slip by. (Jolene L. Roehlkepartain, OURS Magazine, February 1993)

Without question, this is the most practical book I have ever read on this subject, and I hope that every parent gets a copy and puts it into practice.

Book Description


As parents, you have only a few years to prepare your children for a world that requires responsibility and maturity for survival. That thought alone can send shivers down your parental spine!

So what do you do? Hover over your kids so they never make mistakes? Drill them so they'll remember the important principles when you're on their own? Tear your hair out, wondering if teaching them responsibility is anything but a battle of wills?

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