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For Your Mind: Book Reviews


Whale Done: by Ken Blanchard
Ken Blanchard teams with several trainers at Sea World to show how a positive training model is not only extraordinarily effective in training whales, but also in dealing with human relationships whether it be in managing employees, dealing with a spouse or parenting children. By accentuating the positive and shifting the focus on what is being done right instead of what is being done wrong, Blanchard noticed that killer whales respond similarly to humans in that they become more productive. This approach is in keeping with the Positive Discipline approach presented in our classes. People (including children) typically do not do better by being made to feel worse. Blanchard points out that second chances are rare with killer whales -- unlike the dynamic in human relationships. If the trainer gets frustrated with the whale and takes his anger out on him, the whale can literally have him for lunch. Happily, the consequences are not as absolute when we make mistakes in parenting; our kids give us many chances to get it right. Shifting our lens to seek out the positive in our children then moves the relationship toward greater warmth, effectiveness and success.

I Want to Teach My Child About Manners: by Jennie Bishop
This is an enjoyable book to help parents develop civility and courtesy in their children. In our parenting classes we state: to discipline is to teach or to train. Teaching our children that their actions speak louder than their words is one of our important missions as parents. Manners are simple rules that can make our lives more peaceful, enjoyable and orderly while demonstrating respect and positive regard for others. In this easy to read book, the author provides many helpful hints and strategies for parents to help teach their children a gracious code of conduct and proper etiquette.

Positive Discipline: by Jane Nelson,Ed.D.
Jane Nelson is a giant in the Positive Discipline world. She has authored many books founded in the Adlerian approach to parenting. This classic book helps parents and teachers understand what is driving a child's misbehaviors and what we as adults can do to redirect them in more positive, productive ways. Practical tools for developing, self-discipline, respect, cooperation, and problem solving are presented. Jane offers parents and teachers information to enhance the parent/child or teacher/child relationship. Those who have had the opportunity to read and implement positive discipline, will agree that it can truly be life changing!


Children Learn What They Live: by Dorothy Law Nolte and Rachel Harris
Based on the wonderful poem Ms. Nolte wrote in 1954, this book is a plain yet elegant guide to parenting by example and guiding children into caring, value centered adulthood. It is at its very core a testament to the power of positive discipline to transform your home and nourish your family.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: by Stephen R. Covey
"Life-changing" and "Amazing" hardly do this book justice. Although not strictly a parenting guide this book is grounded in immutable human principles that resonate so well with the Positive Discipline ethic of childrearing we present. Its one of my top ten parenting references and in my all-time top ten books. Year after year it keeps on giving.

Siblings Without Rivalry: by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish
With humor, grace and practicality, these authors have assembled multiple examples of rivalry issues and insightful solutions to a perennial challenge in parenting. This is a must-have if your only child has just become a first-born or if you are full in the thick of parenting more than one.

How to Traumatize Your Children : by Knock Knock Publications
A funny, slightly dark, easy read -- if sarcasm and sardonic humor fit your tastes. Useful as a parenting guide only if you follow the directions to the letter and implement the reverse -- a wry beacon of how NOT to parent.

For Your Heart

SAFEchild (Stop Abuse For Every Child)
What would it be like to see a child anywhere in Wake County and know that she was living free from abuse and neglect? How would it feel to know that there was no chance that someone at home hurt the 4-year-old boy with the bruised face and the cast on his arm? This is the noble vision of SAFEchild . . . to eradicate child abuse in our county. With its legion of dedicated volunteers and a core of exceptional staffers SAFEchild helps Moms, Dads, and other caregivers build strong families. It is clear that a robust family is the cornerstone of a healthy, flourishing community. The many educational and support programs that SAFEchild provides focus on improving family dynamics, family cohesiveness and overall family health. We can't do it alone and we'd love your support. How cool would it be that you helped a Mom pause, take stock and see her child in a more loving way at time of great frustration? It's easy, click below and find out more.

Being a Sharefish in a Selfish World is an enlightening novel that rose from the story Oie Osterkamp wrote for his newborn son in 2008. The great importance of helping those on the planet with us is the primary lesson he explores in this odyssey. Encouraging and supporting others is an act that aligns us with our true purpose and is in fact a manifestation of self-help in its highest form. Proceeds from initial book sales funded local projects for homelessness and have aided substance abuse recovery at The Healing Place in Raleigh. A mission to help people help themselves was developed and came into existence. The current focus is on improving the lives of children in two small communities in southern Honduras. Book proceeds and your contributions support education for Cindy Maria, housing for Sandy, shoes for Jose and better nutrition and medical care for all. Become a Sharefish . . . jump in, the water is divine!


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