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Editor’s Note

“When Times Get Tough...”

This valuable guidebook teaches you how to play to the individual strengths of your child and provides helpful hints during those more (ahem) challenging times.
Scribd Editor

The spirited child—often called "difficult" or "strong-willed"—can easily overwhelm parents, leaving them feeling frustrated and inadequate.Spirited kids are, in fact, simply "more"—by temperament, they are more intense, sensitive, perceptive, persistent, and uncomfortable with change than the average child.Through vivid examples and a refreshingly positive viewpoint, Mary Sheedy Kurcinka offers parents emotional support and proven strategies for handling their spirited child. Raising Your Spirited Child will help you:

Understand your child's—and your own—temperamental traits Plan for success with a simple four-step program Discover the power of positive—rather than negative—labels Cope with tantrums and blowups when they do occur Develop strategies for handling mealtimes, bedtimes, holidays, school and many other situations

Filled with personal insight and authorative advice, Raising Your Spirited Child can help make parenting the joy it should be, rather than the trial it can be.

Topics: Parenting, Informative, Prescriptive, Guides, Contemplative, and Inspirational

Published: HarperCollins on
ISBN: 9780061750748
List price: $9.49
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My son's preschool teacher gave me this book and it changed how I saw my child. And my self. I was a spirited child long before there were books about it and suddenly I understood so many things about me as a child, as an adult and about my son. No negative labels your kid might eventually think they need to live up to, just positive explanations, comfort and a reminder that though your child may not be like all the kids in their class there are other kids like them and they are good kids.My son is 12 now and lots of the things we stuggled with during the early years have resolved themselves but he is still who he is and often does not do what other kids do. Kurcinka helped me to understand him better, to parent from the heart and stick to my guns. Whether that be with my son or in his defense. We talk about individuality but when kids don't conform they, and their parents, often face lots of comment, complaints and unsolicited advice. More so than standard parenting comes with.It's a great book. I highly recommend it.more
If you're the parent of a "spirited" child (sometimes also known as "difficult"), this book may help you find the solutions to your parenting nightmare that you've been searching for.Like most books of this type, the tone is breezy and conversational, as the author attempts to talk the frazzled, desperate parent down from the ledge and invite him or her in for a conversation on how to keep from going crazy in the future. But don't let the easy tone fool you: there's plenty of concrete, specific advice about parenting a spirited child here, backed up by solid research and years of practical experience.Some of the book's strengths:- There's a useful discussion of the distinction between ADHD and spirited behavior (esp. in regard to "distractibility") in Ch. 3 and elsewhere.- The advice on "Letting go of the dream child" (in Ch. 4) is also quite useful, and is the only place I've seen this important subject addressed so frankly.- The discussion of adaptability is very useful for distinguishing between willful disobedience and a genuine need for more transition time (e.g., more warning).The book's weaknesses are relatively minor:- Some of the cultural references are dated (1970s & 80s), and there's some cultural location marking as well -- midwest usages like "pop" for soda or cola, or the phrase "a scuzzy word" for a curse-word, for example. These can be a little distracting, but don't detract much from the content.- The research isn't up to top academic standards--citing what others have said about Jung's work on personality types, for example, without ever going back to the original source (Jung). But then, this book doesn't pretend to be a rigorous academic study.- Like most (all?) books of this type, there's a fair amount of repetition, as concepts get restated in various ways and forms (examples drawn from the author's own family, stories from parents in parenting classes, tables and questionnaires, research cited, etc.). This seems endemic to the genre, and in any case it's easy enough to skim a section if you feel you've already mastered the concept or gotten the message.Conclusion:As a practical guidebook for parents of "spirited" children, this book is a good choice. It is both accessible, encouraging, informative--and most importantly--full of useful and effective advice. I would recommend it in conjunction with a book from the Positive Discipline series. Though there is some overlap between these books, repetition of some key concepts and strategies isn't necessarily a bad thing, and there's enough that's unique to each approach to make reading them both worthwhile.more

Reviews

My son's preschool teacher gave me this book and it changed how I saw my child. And my self. I was a spirited child long before there were books about it and suddenly I understood so many things about me as a child, as an adult and about my son. No negative labels your kid might eventually think they need to live up to, just positive explanations, comfort and a reminder that though your child may not be like all the kids in their class there are other kids like them and they are good kids.My son is 12 now and lots of the things we stuggled with during the early years have resolved themselves but he is still who he is and often does not do what other kids do. Kurcinka helped me to understand him better, to parent from the heart and stick to my guns. Whether that be with my son or in his defense. We talk about individuality but when kids don't conform they, and their parents, often face lots of comment, complaints and unsolicited advice. More so than standard parenting comes with.It's a great book. I highly recommend it.more
If you're the parent of a "spirited" child (sometimes also known as "difficult"), this book may help you find the solutions to your parenting nightmare that you've been searching for.Like most books of this type, the tone is breezy and conversational, as the author attempts to talk the frazzled, desperate parent down from the ledge and invite him or her in for a conversation on how to keep from going crazy in the future. But don't let the easy tone fool you: there's plenty of concrete, specific advice about parenting a spirited child here, backed up by solid research and years of practical experience.Some of the book's strengths:- There's a useful discussion of the distinction between ADHD and spirited behavior (esp. in regard to "distractibility") in Ch. 3 and elsewhere.- The advice on "Letting go of the dream child" (in Ch. 4) is also quite useful, and is the only place I've seen this important subject addressed so frankly.- The discussion of adaptability is very useful for distinguishing between willful disobedience and a genuine need for more transition time (e.g., more warning).The book's weaknesses are relatively minor:- Some of the cultural references are dated (1970s & 80s), and there's some cultural location marking as well -- midwest usages like "pop" for soda or cola, or the phrase "a scuzzy word" for a curse-word, for example. These can be a little distracting, but don't detract much from the content.- The research isn't up to top academic standards--citing what others have said about Jung's work on personality types, for example, without ever going back to the original source (Jung). But then, this book doesn't pretend to be a rigorous academic study.- Like most (all?) books of this type, there's a fair amount of repetition, as concepts get restated in various ways and forms (examples drawn from the author's own family, stories from parents in parenting classes, tables and questionnaires, research cited, etc.). This seems endemic to the genre, and in any case it's easy enough to skim a section if you feel you've already mastered the concept or gotten the message.Conclusion:As a practical guidebook for parents of "spirited" children, this book is a good choice. It is both accessible, encouraging, informative--and most importantly--full of useful and effective advice. I would recommend it in conjunction with a book from the Positive Discipline series. Though there is some overlap between these books, repetition of some key concepts and strategies isn't necessarily a bad thing, and there's enough that's unique to each approach to make reading them both worthwhile.more
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