Archives for September 7, 2018

Our Top Book Selections for Back-to-School!

Parenting isn’t an easy thing to do but helpful advice can make it easier! I like this book Raising Cooperative Kids and it has many helpful techniques. Award-winning family research psychologists Marion Forgatch and Gerald Patterson provide the tools to create a happy family. Raising Cooperative Kids – Excerpt “Clear Directions”

Clear Directions

Parents have different ways to get their children to comply. Many involve coercion, which essentially involves the use of psychological and even physical force to accomplish a goal. “You will do what I say or else! “Stress in our personal lives and in the workplace often ignites our use of coercion. Moreover, for better or worse, we tend to follow examples set by our own parents. If coercion reigned supreme in your family as you were growing up, you may find yourself using it with your own children and also your spouse or partner. At one end of the spectrum, we’ve seen parents who command their children like boot-camp sergeants. They may resort to threats or, in extreme cases, even violence. At the other end, we have watched parents, determined not to follow in their authoritarian parents’ footsteps, plead with their children over something as simple as coming to dinner or shutting the door quietly. Neither approach is effective, as you may have discovered already. Commanding, debating, or pleading with children does not teach cooperation. What we have learned from watching parents and their children is that the most efficient approach is to give the child a clear, concise direction in a polite, emotionally neutral, tone. It sounds deceptively simple, doesn’t it? It is not. We have developed a set of strategies for giving clear and effective directions that encourage cooperation. Here are our basic strategies.

Basic Strategies for Giving Clear Directions  Use good timing.  Get physically close.  Make contact (eye contact and/or physical contact).  Use a pleasant tone of voice and facial expression.  Give one direction at a time.  Make a statement—don’t ask.  Be specific.  Say what to do.  Use the child’s name.  Use the words “please” and “now.”  Say: “Name, do (behavior) now, please.” (e.g., “Isabelle, come to the table, now please”). Use few words.  Start with behaviors that take less than two minutes.  Stand and hold silently (with a neutral to positive expression).

This last point, stand and hold, requires that you remain close to your child after you deliver your direction and wait silently for their response. Parents say this is hard to do, especially maintaining a neutral facial expression while silently waiting. Try it and you will see how powerful your quiet presence can be. If you deliver your direction and walk away, you send the message that you may not expect immediate compliance. Integrating these elements into the directions you give your children can produce amazing results—at least at first. The reward for the parent is compliance. It will come as no surprise that children who learn to follow their parents’ directions at an early age also tend to be socially successful with peers, teachers, and others in the community.

Adapted, and reprinted with permission from Conari Press an imprint of Red Wheel/Weiser, RAISING COOPERATIVE KIDS by Marion Forgatch PhD, Gerald Patterson PhD, and Tim Friend is available wherever books and ebooks are sold or directly from the publisher at www.redwheelweiser.com or 800-423-7087.

The next books are a must for young readers heading back-to-school or starting school! 

Z GOES FIRST by Sean Lamb (Imprint, May 29, 2018, Ages 3-6)

This is a delightful story that I recommend for ages 3-6, especially those learning their alphabet! As Z travels through the alphabet, kids learn each letter form. The text is filled with great quips and clever characters, like the letter “I” who loves to look in the mirror!

  • Mike Perry is an acclaimed artist known for his inventive typography and illustration, and in particular he is beloved for his intro illustrations for Broad City. His illustrations for Z Goes First are fresh, playful, and strongly characterize each letter.

STEGOTHESAURUS by Bridget Heos; illustrated by T. L. McBeth (Henry Holt BYR, June 12, 2018)

  • Dinosaurs star or feature in many beloved and bestselling picture books, including Bob Shea’s Dinosaur vs. series, Are We There Yet? by Dan Santat, and Tea Rex by Molly Idle.
  • STEGOTHESAURUS introduces young readers to the sexy topic of synonyms! The enriched vocabulary used in this book is sure to make it a hit with schools and libraries.
  • Bridget Heos is a rising star in the picture book world – her Mustache Baby books are bonafide hits and I, Fly appears on numerous state lists. Her special brand of humor is evident in her fiction, including this book and its forthcoming sequel, and nonfiction (see Who Wants to Be a Princess? and the upcoming Who Wants to Be a Pirate?)
  • TL McBeth is a find, and we’re thrilled to publish his debut. Fresh out of college with four books already signed up, he has vision, humor, and heart–the trifecta!
  • What new words will Stegothesaurus (and young readers) learn in the second edition?

THUNDERCLUCK! by Paul Tillery; illustrated by Paul Tillery, Meg Wittwer (Roaring Brook Press, October 30, 2018, Ages 8-12)

  • You can’t help but laugh at this Viking-helmet-wearing chicken, a formidable superhero who shoots lightning bolts from his wings!
  • Teachers & librarians can get behind the fun introduction to Norse gods & goddesses that is expertly woven into the narrative.
  • The author and illustrator are animators who, in addition to including eight illustrations per chapter, have already created an animated logo and an award-winning THUNDERCLUCK short film.
  • Thundercluck’s best friend is a fearless and celebrated Viking girl warrior.
  • Paul Tillery IV was born in Raleigh, North Carolina. He’s always loved drawing, storytelling, and off-kilter comedy. Paul created Thundercluck at the Savannah College of Art and Design. He earned his MFA in animation from SCAD-Atlanta in 2014, and he now teaches animation at SCAD in Savannah, GA.

THE LITTLE SCHOOL BUS by Margery Cuyler; illustrated by Bob Kolar (Henry Holt BYR, May 22, 2018, Ages 3-6)

  • The Little School Bus is a terrific companion to bestselling board book The Little Dump Truck.
  • Join Driver Bob and his little school bus as they wake early, pick up a diverse group of children, and drop them off at school.
  • The lyrical text, catchy rhyme, and bright pictures make this a perfect choice for preschoolers who are soon to be school bus riders!

This next one is a must-read for parents! Especially those who have children who struggle with ADHD, Autism, anxiety or any other differences. 

Debbie Reber’s DIFFERENTLY WIRED: Raising an Exceptional Child in a Conventional World. 

Debbie offers a new vision for parents of “atypical” kids – the 1 in 5 (2.4 million) children who struggle with ADHD, dyslexia, autism, anxiety, and other neurodifferences, and whose families struggle along with them.

 Debbie’s ideas shift the whole paradigm that “different” does not equal “deficit,” as she’s done so well with the TiLT podcasts (20K+ downloads). Her stories, specific tips, and key “tilts” show parents a way to find a happier, healthier family dynamic, and allow kids to fully realize their best selves. I really found this a positive and encouraging book.

About the Differently Wired

As mother of a “2e” (twice exceptional) son, with the trifecta diagnosis of ADHD, Asperger’s, and gifted, Deborah Reber is well aware that parenting an atypical child in a conventional world is an often lonely and difficult journey. Like her son Asher, 5 percent of school-aged children (2.4 million) in America are identified with having neurological differences— whether it is a learning disability, dyslexia, autism, or anxiety; and as a result are looked at as outliers growing up in a world that doesn’t respect, support, or embrace who they inherently are.

Fueled by a desire to change that, Reber founded TiLT Parenting in 2016 as a first step in shifting the conversation and to help parents find more peace, joy, and support along the way. What first started as a weekly podcast has grown into a thriving global community dedicated to embracing and supporting who their kids are, no matter what.

DIFFERENTLY WIRED: Raising an Exceptional Kid in a Conventional World [Workman Publishing; June 2018; $26.95] by New York Times bestselling author Deborah Reber expands on TiLT’s mission, offering a new path for parents of neurodiverse kids. Laying out a vision for redefining how differently wired children are perceived in the world, Reber asks parents to alter their thinking and actions in a way that will not only change the family dynamic but will allow for these children to fully realize their best selves.

Combining personal stories with practical advice, Differently Wired’s frank and powerful discussion of the challenges facing families with neurodiverse children is followed by 18 shifts – called “Tilts” – aimed to offer parents tangible, doable changes that are small day-to-day tweaks with exponential effects.

About Deborah Reber

Deborah Reber is a New York Times bestselling author, certified life coach, and speaker who changed her career dramatically in 2016 when she founded TiLT Parenting, a website, weekly podcast, and social media company for parents like her who are raising differently wired children. The TiLT Parenting Podcast has grown to be a top podcast in iTunes’ Kids and Family category, with more than 150,000 downloads and a slate of guests that includes high-profile thought leaders across the parenting and education space. Debbie’s next book is Differently Wired: Raising an Exceptional Child in a Conventional World (Workman Publishing, 2018).

Prior to launching TiLT, Debbie spent the past fifteen years writing inspiring books for women and teens. In doing so, she built a successful brand as a teen authority, was frequently interviewed and spoke about issues like media literacy, self-esteem, and confidence, and consulted for clients including the Girl Scouts, the Disney Channel, McGraw Hill, and Kaplan.

Before becoming a writer and coach, Debbie worked in TV and video production, producing documentaries and PSAs for CARE and UNICEF, working on Blue’s Clues for Nickelodeon in New York, and developing original series for Cartoon Network in Los Angeles. She has an MA in Media Studies from the New School for Social Research and a BA in Communications from Pennsylvania State University.

In the summer of 2013, she moved from Seattle to Amsterdam, where she currently lives with her husband Derin and homeschools her 13-year-old son Asher. You can read more about her at debbiereber.net and tiltparenting.com.

Self Disclosure: I received copies of the above books to facilitate this post. I do not feature all books that I receive but do feature books that I recommend! Images were also provided and information.

Brad Kitt and Angelina, Sept. 6th Pets of the Week!

He was voted the Sexiest Kitten Alive (by us, of course), and she is one of the most lithe, lissome little mystery girls we know! They’re Brad Kitt and Angelina, our Long Beach Meower Couple who get on a lot better than their human counterparts. Brad Kitt has wayyyy more attitude and good looks than his namesake and will be your number-one guy—he’ll melt your heart with those piercing green eyes! Angelina has sultry looks and a fixed gaze that lets everyone around her know that she’s all business. Meet both these superstars on the shelter side of the Companion Animal Village at 7700 East Spring St., (562) 570-PETS. Ask for ID#A612663 for Angelina and ID#A614027 for Brad Kitt.

(This rescue encouraged by the usual suspects.)

Credit: Companion Animal Village.