The lovely (and generous) folks at Penguin have really good timing. They’ve just sent me a pair of parenting books at a time when I’m struggling intensely with parenting. I don’t like to talk about it a lot in the public sphere, but I’m having some serious challenges with parenting — in particular with one of my children. Out of respect for my child’s privacy I’ll leave it at that, but I do want to share some information about this remarkable book I just finished, called Your Child’s Strengths, by Jenifer Fox, M.Ed.
I’ll let the publisher speak for the book (below) but let me just add my endorsement: this is a very new and uplifting way to look at how we parent and educate our children. Traditional discipline methods and indeed the entire educational system we all grew up with all focus on identifying children’s weaknesses. Our kids aren’t helped to discover their strengths in any real or organized way. Sure, we (most of us) help them pursue their passions outside of school hours, but have you ever sat down and asked your child a series of questions in order to identify their strengths, and then helped your children discover and develop them? Most of us haven’t, I’m sure.
For a fresh take on helping your child become his or her best, I strongly recommend Your Child’s Strengths.
Here’s what the publisher has to say:
In Your Child’s Strengths, educator and
author Jenifer Fox, M.Ed. clearly and passionately shows parents and
teachers how to identify a child’s strengths based on their actions,
how to encourage those strengths once they’ve been identified, and how
to help kids implement the strengths they reveal.
The book has three parts. Part 1 describes current ideas and
practices that contribute to children’s feelings of weakness and part 2
explains what strengths are, focusing on three particular zones,
including: Activity Strengths, the tasks that make kids feel engaged and energized; Relationship Strengths, the things students do with others that make them feel valued and competent; and Learning Strengths,
the unique ways we all approach and understand new information. Part 3
offers a variety of practical workbook exercises that parents, teachers
or children can use to discover and develop their strengths.
Discovering and learning how to implement each child’s individual
strengths, and how to put them all together, is vital not only to a
student’s success in school, but, more importantly, to success in life
outside of school, and in our ever-changing economy. Your Child’s Strengths
is a user-friendly guide for parents, teachers, and administrators that
will improve individual performance and provide an indispensable road
map for young people