Books – Interesting Reads
Becoming the Parent You Want to Be: A Sourcebook of Strategies for the First Five Years
by Laura Davis and Janis Keyser. Covers a nice wide range of issues in caring for children, from child development, potty training, separation anxiety and other fears, eating, discipline, play and learning. But this is combined with a focus on parenting skills – developing a vision for yourself, creating a community that supports that vision, forgiving yourself for when you “fail” as a parent, and so on.
Brain Rules for Baby (Updated and Expanded): How to Raise a Smart and Happy Child from Zero to Five
by John Medina. Another readable, engaging look at what science tells us about how the brain develops, and what that means for us as parents. Where Nurture Shock more presents things as ‘interesting things to think about’ but without specific recommendations, Brain Rules offers very clear, simple recommendations for what you as a parent could/should do.
NurtureShock: New Thinking About Children by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman. Summary of what current research tells us (and how we might parent more effectively based on that) about topics like: language development, learning self-control, praise and self esteem. Very readable – the audio book is also quite engaging.
Parenting Without Borders: Surprising Lessons Parents Around the World Can Teach Us
by Christine Gross-Loh. The author combines cross-cultural research studies with her interviews with parents from around the world and her own experiences as a parent to look at issues from where a child sleeps and what they eat to how they are supervised on the playground and how they are taught at school. She examines the varying cultural norms about what it means to be a “good parent” and what the wisdom of varying cultures has to teach us. She definitely has strong opinions about what she thinks is the right way to parent, but whether or not you agree with them, the book offers ideas that may broaden your perspectives and encourage you to examine your own beliefs.
There’s lots of other great books out there for specific topics, and I will reference these in blog posts on those topics.
Affiliate Note: if you click on any of the book titles above, a link will take you to Amazon to learn details. If you choose to order the item, I receive a portion of the purchase price… this helps me support my work.
Child & Family Web Guide. www.cfw.tufts.edu/ “A directory that evaluates, describes and provides links to hundreds of sites containing child development research and practical advice…[sites with] the highest quality child development research that are parent friendly.” [Note, this is a great resource for what they have, but I wish they would expand it to review more sites.]
CYFERNet: Children, Youth, and Families Education and Research Network. www.cyfernet.org/ “Practical, Research-based Information from the Nation’s Leading Universities.” Links to great research-based but readable materials from around the web on topics like: Child Development, Activities and Learning, Nutrition, Health & Safety, Guidance and Discipline.
Elizabeth Pantley’s website: www.pantley.com/elizabeth/links/4.html. Tip sheets on practical “no cry” solutions to naps, sleep, potty training, tantrums, discipline, etc.
Healthy Children from the American Academy of Pediatrics: www.healthychildren.org A reliable resource for information on children’s health. Includes info on exercise, diet, development, safety, immunizations, and illness.
Just in Time Parenting: http://jitp.extension.org/. Parents can subscribe to receive a free email newsletter every other month with information detailed to their child’s exact developmental level. (You can also download any issue at any time from their website.) These newsletters are a fabulous resource on developmental milestones, activities parents can do to support their child’s development, and tips for handling the challenges of that developmental phase. [Note: another good series of monthly / quarterly developmental newsletters is The Growing Years.]
La Leche League: www.llli.org. Information on extended breastfeeding, tandem nursing a toddler and a baby, and weaning.
Parent Map: www.parentmap.com. Tons of great articles in their archives on every parenting topic from pregnancy through college. Seattle-based: Best source of info on local family oriented events and activities.
Parenting Counts from Talaris: www.parentingcounts.org. Check out the developmental timeline, which covers learning, communication, social, and physical milestones (e.g. “recognizes the difference between self and other people” between 12 and 20 months). Click on any milestone to learn more – for some there are videos and additional attachments with more information. Also check out the “research” section which links to detailed articles on a variety of topics.
Parenting Resources: page with links to LOTS of other great sites on child development, literacy, discipline, etc. This is helpful for parents and great for parent educators, as lots of the sites offer printable handouts you can use in classes:
Parenting Tips from Parenting Press: http://parentingpress.com/tip_archive.html. A large collection of practical tips for parents of children of all ages.
Seattle Children’s Safety and Wellness pages: www.seattlechildrens.org/safety-wellness/ Great resource for information on all topics related to child safety and health.
Zero to Three from the National Center for Infants, Toddlers, and Families: www.zerotothree.org. Click on the behavior and development tab for lots of great articles (and some insightful podcasts) on brain development, infant mental health, nutrition, sleep, play, and promoting social and emotional development. Also, be sure to check out this section on school readiness which has some great tips for how to build your child’s thinking skills, self-control, and self-confidence.
Again, there are lots of great websites on specific topics, and I will be linking to those in my blog posts throughout the year.
King 5’s “Learning for Life” series: www.king5.com/news/learning-for-life This on-going series addresses a wide variety of parenting topics from pregnancy through college, and features interviews with local experts and representatives of local organizations. It’s a good way to learn about kids and parenting, and ALSO learn about local resources for families.
Family Help Line by Parent Trust for Washington Children 1-800-932-HOPE. Call for support on any parenting challenge.