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Raising Human Beings: Creating a Collaborative Partnership with Your Child

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In Raising Human Beings, the renowned child psychologist and New York Times bestselling author of Lost at School and The Explosive Child explains how to cultivate a better parent-child relationship while also nurturing empathy, honesty, resilience, and independence. Parents have an important task: figure out who their child is—his or her skills, preferences, beliefs, values In Raising Human Beings, the renowned child psychologist and New York Times bestselling author of Lost at School and The Explosive Child explains how to cultivate a better parent-child relationship while also nurturing empathy, honesty, resilience, and independence. Parents have an important task: figure out who their child is—his or her skills, preferences, beliefs, values, personality traits, goals, and direction—get comfortable with it, and then help him or her pursue and live a life that is congruent with it. But parents also want to have influence. They want their kid to be independent, but not if he or she is going to make bad choices. They don’t want to be harsh and rigid, but nor do they want a noncompliant, disrespectful kid. They want to avoid being too pushy and overbearing, but not if an unmotivated, apathetic kid is what they have to show for it. They want to have a good relationship with their kids, but not if that means being a pushover. They don’t want to scream, but they do want to be heard. Good parenting is about striking the balance between a child’s characteristics and a parent’s desire to have influence. Now Dr. Ross Greene offers a detailed and practical guide for raising kids in a way that enhances relationships, improves communication, and helps kids learn how to resolve disagreements without conflict. Through his well-known model of solving problems collaboratively, parents can forgo time-out and sticker charts, stop badgering, berating, threatening, and punishing, allow their kids to feel heard and validated, and have influence. From homework to hygiene, curfews, to screen time, Raising Human Beings arms parents with the tools they need to raise kids in ways that are non-punitive and non-adversarial and that brings out the best in both parent and child.


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In Raising Human Beings, the renowned child psychologist and New York Times bestselling author of Lost at School and The Explosive Child explains how to cultivate a better parent-child relationship while also nurturing empathy, honesty, resilience, and independence. Parents have an important task: figure out who their child is—his or her skills, preferences, beliefs, values In Raising Human Beings, the renowned child psychologist and New York Times bestselling author of Lost at School and The Explosive Child explains how to cultivate a better parent-child relationship while also nurturing empathy, honesty, resilience, and independence. Parents have an important task: figure out who their child is—his or her skills, preferences, beliefs, values, personality traits, goals, and direction—get comfortable with it, and then help him or her pursue and live a life that is congruent with it. But parents also want to have influence. They want their kid to be independent, but not if he or she is going to make bad choices. They don’t want to be harsh and rigid, but nor do they want a noncompliant, disrespectful kid. They want to avoid being too pushy and overbearing, but not if an unmotivated, apathetic kid is what they have to show for it. They want to have a good relationship with their kids, but not if that means being a pushover. They don’t want to scream, but they do want to be heard. Good parenting is about striking the balance between a child’s characteristics and a parent’s desire to have influence. Now Dr. Ross Greene offers a detailed and practical guide for raising kids in a way that enhances relationships, improves communication, and helps kids learn how to resolve disagreements without conflict. Through his well-known model of solving problems collaboratively, parents can forgo time-out and sticker charts, stop badgering, berating, threatening, and punishing, allow their kids to feel heard and validated, and have influence. From homework to hygiene, curfews, to screen time, Raising Human Beings arms parents with the tools they need to raise kids in ways that are non-punitive and non-adversarial and that brings out the best in both parent and child.

30 review for Raising Human Beings: Creating a Collaborative Partnership with Your Child

  1. 5 out of 5

    Peter Topside

    I felt this was a very interesting read. There is no parent who couldn't benefit from reading this. The sample dialogue between parent and child was really helpful, as it gave you a good idea of how to use the information in a realistic setting. The progression of the book was easy to follow, even if I had to flip to prior chapters a few times. I felt this was a very interesting read. There is no parent who couldn't benefit from reading this. The sample dialogue between parent and child was really helpful, as it gave you a good idea of how to use the information in a realistic setting. The progression of the book was easy to follow, even if I had to flip to prior chapters a few times.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Bam cooks the books ;-)

    #2106-aty-reading challenge--week-19: a non-fiction book. I thought this was an excellent book on parenting skills--resolving problems with collaboration and teaching empathy and appreciation for another's point of view. Oh, if these skills could only be applied to the world at large, most especially the political arena! Dr Greene lays out a three-step program for problem-solving in a collaborative partnership with your child, gives several examples, answers questions and gives advice about overc #2106-aty-reading challenge--week-19: a non-fiction book. I thought this was an excellent book on parenting skills--resolving problems with collaboration and teaching empathy and appreciation for another's point of view. Oh, if these skills could only be applied to the world at large, most especially the political arena! Dr Greene lays out a three-step program for problem-solving in a collaborative partnership with your child, gives several examples, answers questions and gives advice about overcoming hurdles that may arise. Many thanks to the publisher, author and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review this excellent book!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Miriam Downey

    Read my full review here: http://mimi-cyberlibrarian.blogspot.c... At a family picnic the other day, my granddaughter (age 5) was having a hard time focusing on eating her dinner. There was a lot of food on her plate, and she had touched none of it. My daughter said to her, "I think that you have two options here: one option is to just sit here staring at your plate until the picnic is over. The other option is to come up with a solution with me about how much you need to eat and then eat that a Read my full review here: http://mimi-cyberlibrarian.blogspot.c... At a family picnic the other day, my granddaughter (age 5) was having a hard time focusing on eating her dinner. There was a lot of food on her plate, and she had touched none of it. My daughter said to her, "I think that you have two options here: one option is to just sit here staring at your plate until the picnic is over. The other option is to come up with a solution with me about how much you need to eat and then eat that amount so that you can go and play." My granddaughter decided that the second option was the best. She said that she was worried that there was too much food on her plate. She and her mother figured out the amount she needed to eat; she ate quickly; and then got up to go play with her cousins. One of her aunts watched the entire exchange and remarked, "Gee, I wish I had known that strategy 10 years ago when I needed it." In his excellent book, Raising Human Beings, Dr. Ross Greene has created a plan to encourage collaborative partnerships between parents and children that can help to resolve the many scenarios that parents and children have to negotiate on the pathway to adulthood. The goal, of course, is for parents to help their children develop skills to become independent without becoming adversarial. To go back to my granddaughter's food situation. Dr. Greene suggests three sets of options, One option is Plan A, the plan in which the parents are in control. "You are going to sit there until you finish that food." Plan B is the plan my daughter chose. It takes into account the child's problem and together they seek to find a solution. Plan B actively uses three steps (empathy, define adult concerns, and invitation) to establish understanding and work in partnership to come up with solutions that address every party’s concerns. Dr. Greene also offers Plan C in which the parent defers to the child's skills, beliefs, values, preferences, personality traits and goals. An example of this would be another granddaughter's decision not to play soccer anymore and to try out for the cheerleading squad, instead. Still athletic but more social. Her parents deferred to her decision-making skills, even though her father was disappointed because soccer had been an interest that they shared. Raising Human Beings has a child rearing plan that goes way beyond the "Because I said so!" form of decision making to a much more collaborative and affirming style of parenting. Ultimately the child becomes a far more confident decision maker—ready and able to become independent. The reviewer in Publisher's Weekly concludes: "This book is a game-changer for parents, teachers, and other caregivers of children. Its advice is reasonable and empathetic, and readers will feel ready to start creating a better relationship with the children in their lives."

  4. 4 out of 5

    Jenna Anderson

    So, this book basically describes three different ways to solve problems with your kids. Plan A: Impose. Plan B: Listen and find solutions that address their needs and yours. Plan C: Adjust your expectations (and maybe ignore your own needs). It was clearly written under the pretense that EVERYONE gravitates toward Plan A. Personally, I doubt the folks that really do that would ever pick up a book about “creating collaborative partnerships with your kids.” But most of the book was spent trying t So, this book basically describes three different ways to solve problems with your kids. Plan A: Impose. Plan B: Listen and find solutions that address their needs and yours. Plan C: Adjust your expectations (and maybe ignore your own needs). It was clearly written under the pretense that EVERYONE gravitates toward Plan A. Personally, I doubt the folks that really do that would ever pick up a book about “creating collaborative partnerships with your kids.” But most of the book was spent trying to convince those people to try this other thing. For me, I tend to be an under-functioner under anxiety, so I gravitate toward Plan C. This book... doesn’t seem to think people like me exist. But we do, and this book is probably not for us. Did I need the section that quoted biblical scripture at me to convince me not to spank my kids? No. No, I didn’t. Did this white dude author only reference other white dudes’ work? Yes he did. Did sentences like, “The disenfranchised and marginalized among us seem increasingly willing to use extreme acts of violence to have their voices heard,” and “Along with some other historically subjugated groups - women, people of color - children have come a long way,” make me cringe? Yes, they did. Where this book really earned the low rating from me: There is a hypothetical family described repeatedly throughout the book... the boyfriend is an emotionally and physically abusive piece of shit, who maaaaagically learns to show respect at the end. Fuck this shit. Plan B is not going to convince an abuser to stop being abusive. Over all, I would say that if someone feels like they’re an over-functioner under stress and wants some guidance on what it looks like to slow down and listen... then go ahead and read this. But with a giant grain of salt.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Chris

    As I ponder what to say about this book, I'm reminded of two quotes I like from another, Difficult Conversations by Douglas Stone: People almost never change without first feeling understood. The single most important thing [you can do] is to shift [your] internal stance from "I understand" to "Help me understand." Everything else follows from that.Though stated differently, those ideas lie at the core of the parenting approach Greene describes in this book. Parents can best help their children le As I ponder what to say about this book, I'm reminded of two quotes I like from another, Difficult Conversations by Douglas Stone: People almost never change without first feeling understood. The single most important thing [you can do] is to shift [your] internal stance from "I understand" to "Help me understand." Everything else follows from that.Though stated differently, those ideas lie at the core of the parenting approach Greene describes in this book. Parents can best help their children learn, change, and grow--and deal with difficulties and misbehavior--by starting with listening and empathy, then asking for the same in return. Together, parents and children try to fully understand the problem under discussion and craft a solution that addresses everyone's concerns. It is both a step-by-step, formulaic method to follow in each specific instance and a general framework for helping kids grow into respectful, independent, capable people. Greene builds the framework over the course of the book, developing each step in turn with numerous examples of putting it into practice in different situations. He explores potential pitfalls and failures, and includes a question-and-answer section in each chapter. It's very approachable and easy to understand (though did not make the most scintillating audiobook listening). It's definitely something I would recommend for every parent, educator, and caregiver. Really, it's something I would recommend for everyone. Though this is very specifically about parenting, not much extrapolation is needed to think of it as something for managers and supervisors, as the roles and scenarios are very similar. And even without the power-dynamic roles, the approach to communication in general is one everyone would benefit from--after all, one of Greene's implementation examples is between not a parent and child but two parents.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Vernice

    Actually a pretty good listen. A LOT of repetition, but I guess that's necessary to drive a point home. He suggests a very interesting way of dealing with kids that I'd be interested to try out, though I do think he has unrealistic views on small children's ability to communicate... but still... coming from an abusive household this seems to be a method that I'd like to try as an alternative to what I experienced... maybe spare my son the trauma 🤣 Actually a pretty good listen. A LOT of repetition, but I guess that's necessary to drive a point home. He suggests a very interesting way of dealing with kids that I'd be interested to try out, though I do think he has unrealistic views on small children's ability to communicate... but still... coming from an abusive household this seems to be a method that I'd like to try as an alternative to what I experienced... maybe spare my son the trauma 🤣

  7. 5 out of 5

    Margo Kelly

    I highly recommend this book. It would make a great gift for parents with children of any age – but the younger the better. It’s easier to instill a sound pattern of parenting when the kids are young; although, this book does offer excellent examples of changing parental styles even when the kids are teenagers. Over the years, I’ve read quite a few parenting books, and one of the things I’ve learned is: you do not have to agree with every single bit of advice offered within the pages. Take what w I highly recommend this book. It would make a great gift for parents with children of any age – but the younger the better. It’s easier to instill a sound pattern of parenting when the kids are young; although, this book does offer excellent examples of changing parental styles even when the kids are teenagers. Over the years, I’ve read quite a few parenting books, and one of the things I’ve learned is: you do not have to agree with every single bit of advice offered within the pages. Take what works for you and apply it to your situation. Ross W. Greene, PhD, has taken experiences from his twenty-five years of being a clinical psychologist and organized his advice in a very easy-to-read format. Instead of compiling pages and pages of never-ending advice and examples all in the same font and line spacing, the author (and editor and publisher, I assume) diversified the text. There are paragraphs where straight information is delivered, there are case studies presented in stories, there are Q&A sections, and there are plenty of subtitles to help keep you engaged with the book. While most of the writing is excellent, Greene does like to start sentences with the word “but” and he loves his creative dialogue tags such as hissed, mumbled, grumbled, and protested. None of which actually took away from the overall content, but it was distracting to me. While I loved and agreed with much of Greene’s advice, I will tell you that I let my babies cry themselves to sleep in their cribs. After reading this book, if I had to do all over again, I would still let my babies cry themselves to sleep. And yet, I am certainly one to advocate parents considering alternatives to figure out what works best for them. Greene’s straight-forward method of “Creating a Collaborative Partnership with Your Child” is one that will foster kinder human beings who are able to problem solve with empathy not only while growing up but also as adults. Some of my favorite ideas and lines from the book: “Identity achievement refers to a person who has both undergone the identity exploration process and has also developed a well-defined self-concept and identity. She know who she is, what she believes, and where she’s going” (page 24). “What’s best for him is likely to involve more ‘listening’ than ‘lessoning’” (page 35). “Your child would prefer to be doing well” (page 39). “But there’s another reason solving problems collaboratively is hard: many adults haven’t had much practice at it, having been raised by parents who were probably highly skilled at demanding and insisting” (page 81). “I’ve worked with three-year-olds who had an easier time participating verbally than some seventeen-year-olds” (page 190). “We live in the information age, and we are saturated with demands for empathy … sadly, that fatigue sometimes causes us to respond with less compassion and empathy in our interactions with our children…” (page 240).

  8. 4 out of 5

    Joanna

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. It's like this book was written for me! At first I thought he was making it sound too easy and kept asking myself "How am I ever going to do this?" In the heat of the moment it's so easy to count to 5 or threaten "no cartoons!" Or "I'll take your legos away" Or beg and plead to get out of the house on time. None of those approaches solves the problem in a way that's mutually satisfactory. The author is clear that collaborative parenting is NOT living in "Pushover Provinces" just because it's not It's like this book was written for me! At first I thought he was making it sound too easy and kept asking myself "How am I ever going to do this?" In the heat of the moment it's so easy to count to 5 or threaten "no cartoons!" Or "I'll take your legos away" Or beg and plead to get out of the house on time. None of those approaches solves the problem in a way that's mutually satisfactory. The author is clear that collaborative parenting is NOT living in "Pushover Provinces" just because it's not the "Dictatorial Kingdom." It's about communicating with your child, figuring out the cause of a problem from their perspective, allowing them to come up with a solution, and discussing what you think based on your experience and wisdom of being the adult. It's important to try something that meets your values and expectations and is still responsive to who the kid is and wants to be. It takes practice and the first attempt at solving the problem often doesn't work and you have to keep working on it. I liked the emphasis on figuring out the major unsolved problems you see, checking in with your kid, and talking about them at a time when you both are relaxed and focused, not pressed to leave the house or distracted. How does it work? There are three approaches the author discussed: Plan A: Our common default as parents, directive and punitive, solving problems for our kids. Author argues we need to steer away from Plan A. Plan B: The collaborative approach using empathy, appreciating how one's actions are affecting others, resolving disagreements in ways that do not cause conflict, taking another's perspective, and being honest. Plan C: defer unsolved problem until kid is ready developmentally or until kid has tried to solve on her own. Plan C is usually arrived at after talking to your kid. I found his discussion about teachers' role to play: Academia still heavily relies on high stakes testing, unattainable expectations and punitive reactions instead of collaborative problem solving. We would do well to all work together with educators. He also has a chapter on "parental angst" on why we tend to use Plan A: we care a whole lot about our kids and want them to be safe and succeed. That was the chapter that made it seem more doable. Bottom line: Parent in a way that fosters the better side of our human nature. He states at the end: "The real world needs more human beings." Truth.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Tina Grove

    Not as great as I expected it to be. Some solid tips but maybe not the right book for the age of my child right now. I felt the footprints on the cover alluded that it was appropriate for younger children. All the examples are more for kids 8-16 or so. There's about a paragraph or so specifically for toddlers and how to adjust the approach for toddlers but honestly the example they gave was for potty training and not very helpful in my opinion. I will try to read again when my son gets older if Not as great as I expected it to be. Some solid tips but maybe not the right book for the age of my child right now. I felt the footprints on the cover alluded that it was appropriate for younger children. All the examples are more for kids 8-16 or so. There's about a paragraph or so specifically for toddlers and how to adjust the approach for toddlers but honestly the example they gave was for potty training and not very helpful in my opinion. I will try to read again when my son gets older if needed. I guess I was a bit disappointed because I've heard some talks by the author and think he's really great but for some reason this one didn't deliver what I thought it would.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Thomas Edmund

    There are a lot of parenting books out there, talking about punishment, reinforcement, positive parenting etc etc but I think that Raising Human Beings captures the crux of the matter, explaining the difference between working 'on' or trying to control your child versus working 'together.' I know that such things can sound very airy fairy to some, but its an incredible valuable perspective that the author does a brilliant job explaining. The book certainly helped me as a parent. There are a lot of parenting books out there, talking about punishment, reinforcement, positive parenting etc etc but I think that Raising Human Beings captures the crux of the matter, explaining the difference between working 'on' or trying to control your child versus working 'together.' I know that such things can sound very airy fairy to some, but its an incredible valuable perspective that the author does a brilliant job explaining. The book certainly helped me as a parent.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    I liked the style of writing Dr. Greene has. He presents information and the reasons for his suggestions, he gives real-life dialogue and scenarios, and he also includes a sort of FAQ about each chapter's topics. I like that he addresses each concept with this detailed attention to suit many different styles of learning. I found myself drawn to the real-life situations and narratives and admiring how each situation unfolded rather than the question and answer portion (which I found more critical I liked the style of writing Dr. Greene has. He presents information and the reasons for his suggestions, he gives real-life dialogue and scenarios, and he also includes a sort of FAQ about each chapter's topics. I like that he addresses each concept with this detailed attention to suit many different styles of learning. I found myself drawn to the real-life situations and narratives and admiring how each situation unfolded rather than the question and answer portion (which I found more critical and tiresome). I didn't agree necessarily with the idea to abandon the pattern of parental authority and decision making. I don't think it makes me a horrible parent or person for not allowing every.dang.thing to be an open discussion and collaborative problem solving experience-- especially not when the safety of my child (or other children) is at stake. There were times when I felt a bit demonized for relying on what Greene refers to as Plan A where as I saw some scenarios of using Plan B as capitulating to an immature human. I appreciated his respect for children though and their emotions, and I'm intrigued to read his books about schools. I imagine I could glean much from what he has to offer about our approach to education. I received a galley of this book via NetGalley for review.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Lee

    Laughably bad. I finished the book so I will save you from wasting your time with this summary. Kids do well if they can. If they can’t, use a chirpy voice and ask them “what’s up?” Example: “Hey I noticed you’re having trouble doing homework after school. What’s up?” At this point your child will open up to you because they realize how much you care about them and their concerns. You will both come to a mutually agreeable answer without sweeping unilateral solutions that make kids angry. Because Laughably bad. I finished the book so I will save you from wasting your time with this summary. Kids do well if they can. If they can’t, use a chirpy voice and ask them “what’s up?” Example: “Hey I noticed you’re having trouble doing homework after school. What’s up?” At this point your child will open up to you because they realize how much you care about them and their concerns. You will both come to a mutually agreeable answer without sweeping unilateral solutions that make kids angry. Because children are the equals of adults, you must compromise instead of telling them what to do. This is how you build a better and more civilized society.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

    This was a very clear practical guide that targeted some of the struggles I have in terms of parenting as I was parented versus a more collaborative approach. I certainly believe in empathy and active listening but the process of determining if it’s even a problem that you’ll deal with (plan C) at the moment was a good way to break things down so they don’t feel overwhelming. I also liked the overarching theme of being influencer, and fostering characteristics empathy, Appreciation of how one’s This was a very clear practical guide that targeted some of the struggles I have in terms of parenting as I was parented versus a more collaborative approach. I certainly believe in empathy and active listening but the process of determining if it’s even a problem that you’ll deal with (plan C) at the moment was a good way to break things down so they don’t feel overwhelming. I also liked the overarching theme of being influencer, and fostering characteristics empathy, Appreciation of how one’s actions are affecting others, honesty, independence, taking another’s perspective and resolving disagreements in ways that do not involve conflict. Page 149. Also the concept of making inferences about one another from kids to parents and how those could be incorrect and we’re wrong a majority of the time. We then put in consequences or solutions to problems without taking into account one another’s perspective and this does not save us time. Key themes: Kids do well if they can. Your child would prefer to be doing well. Good parenting means being responsive to the hand you’ve been dealt. (Pg 39) Noting that we all have options for how we handle our own concerns about unmet expectations and have a conversation about it. The key here that I also found liberating is we don’t all have the same perspective about the concern and sometimes using this active listening and empathy with the other parent to figure out how we’re going to use collaborative problem solving together first is perhaps a big part of the process. I recognize that feeling a lack of control and living with one or many who don’t view some things as a concern or problem, leads me to want to punish or hold them accountable for better behavior and it doesn’t work well......actually Period. I thought the examples and dialogue were very realistic and to me it’s focused on not good or great parents versus bad parents but increasing dialogue and understanding. The modeling in the goal that we have for a better community and actually has foundations for infant mental health and it was so interesting to be talking to an adoptive parent and wondering about how this might apply to her two year old and the next day started reading chapter 8 oh 181, where Greene talks about an enduring partnership beginning in infancy.... if I’d had this concept in 2004/2006 may have done things differently/better but Greene didn’t write this book until 2016, so glad to have read it now— think it offers a lot in the realm of parenting and the foundation of an important relationship built with respect and consideration for each of us as individuals with our own values, personality, preferences and skills— we all do better when we can. This book offers a process and strength based lens for all of us to work toward... there is also repair and the parallel process. Thanks Ross Greene for getting it and sharing it in an easily understood framework.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Cat

    This book expands upon the principles for parent-child dialogue and problem-solving laid out in The Explosive Child. I find the sequence Greene proposes very helpful: showing empathy and acting listening, eliciting the child's perspective on a given difficulty, repeating back what the child suggests and asking for more information until you feel like you've gotten a complete picture; articulating the parent's concerns about the problem; asking for the child's thoughts on a realistic solution tha This book expands upon the principles for parent-child dialogue and problem-solving laid out in The Explosive Child. I find the sequence Greene proposes very helpful: showing empathy and acting listening, eliciting the child's perspective on a given difficulty, repeating back what the child suggests and asking for more information until you feel like you've gotten a complete picture; articulating the parent's concerns about the problem; asking for the child's thoughts on a realistic solution that would address both her concerns and the parent in a satisfactory way; and coming to a collaborative solution. (I type this out and realize I must be dropping a step because he says it's five steps, but this is the gist.) His model dialogues flesh these out, as well as missteps it is easy to take (like proposing a solution yourself in the listing your concerns step). In this installment, Greene indicates that this model of household decision-making and problem-solving is just as helpful for children without behavioral problems as it is for the more challenging children he addresses in the first book. Some of the elements of The Explosive Child (oh, I hate that title!) that were very helpful for me (articulating ways that children get stuck or struggle with meeting expectations) are not as central to this installment. And Greene makes some generalizations about why this collaborative, empathetic approach is useful for the demands of the contemporary marketplace and the development of character that feel both vaguely true (what generalization isn't?) and slightly hokey (anytime you wander into the "citing David Brooks" territory, my skepticism alarm bells start going off). That being said, Greene's philosophy is helpful and clear, and I have found even in my minor inaugural applications of it that it pays great dividends. Children want to be heard, and we too often dismiss (or think we already know) their concerns, which are both pressing and real. It's funny to think that one of the major implications of Greene's work is that adults ask children to be good listeners who consider other people's feelings and problem solve with their peers, while we continue to disregard their words, feelings, and ideas. It is easier, Greene contends and I agree, to take the time to listen and take their perspectives and concerns into account. Also, when they get the chance to think through solutions to the problem at hand, they are honing internal regulation and external collaboration skills they will use in their adult lives. Greene does a great job in this installment thinking through the lasting effects that such open communication can have on parent-child relationships beyond the childhood years.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jay Hennessey

    Parenting = Leadership = Coaching I really enjoyed this book - I did the Kindle/Audio combo and was really glad that I did. There were so many sections that I wanted to go back and re-read / highlight. I have several top of mind take aways. First, was how the author discussed what parents want for their children - to help them on their journey to self-actualization or figuring out who they really are - what are their skills, beliefs, values, etc. (This reminded me of the Alchemist, by Paulo Cholh Parenting = Leadership = Coaching I really enjoyed this book - I did the Kindle/Audio combo and was really glad that I did. There were so many sections that I wanted to go back and re-read / highlight. I have several top of mind take aways. First, was how the author discussed what parents want for their children - to help them on their journey to self-actualization or figuring out who they really are - what are their skills, beliefs, values, etc. (This reminded me of the Alchemist, by Paulo Cholho). My key take away here is that it is “Their Journey”. The author then describes what the parents job is NOT - it is not to mold a lump of clay into what the parent wants. Next, I appreciated the idea of Incompatibility. The idea that children have tons of expectations put on them - from parents, school, friends, etc; and that problems occurs when the child struggles to meet these expectations. This simple concept really hit home for me and my 4 children - a lens to look at the challenges we have faced. The next big take aways were the Plans A / B and C - or in my words, Tell them; Partner with Them; Let’s them Learn (they make a decision that you may not agree with, but you let them figure it out.) The framework for approaching plan B was super helpful - Empathy (listen and understand what is going on); communicate the adult concerns / perspective; and co-create a solution of which you both agree. Throughout the book, I could not help but think that this framework is so much more than a framework for parenting, it is really a framework for leadership and coaching. I recommend this book to EVERYONE! From parenting to being a great co-worker or Teammate, the author provides an amazing perspective and framework for solving problems collaboratively.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Preeti Yeung

    This book certainly challenged my thinking on how I approach problem solving with my children instead of for them. I've applied this a couple of times with my four year old and he is very eager to be a part of the process. I do however feel that this is written through a very western lens, and growing up as a daughter of immigrants (Asian descent), I found many examples and passages unrelatable. At times I felt as if I would rate this book a 5, then a 1, then a 4, etc...which I think shows the st This book certainly challenged my thinking on how I approach problem solving with my children instead of for them. I've applied this a couple of times with my four year old and he is very eager to be a part of the process. I do however feel that this is written through a very western lens, and growing up as a daughter of immigrants (Asian descent), I found many examples and passages unrelatable. At times I felt as if I would rate this book a 5, then a 1, then a 4, etc...which I think shows the strength of the book in some ways to really challenge the unilateral approach most parents rely on. However, what really knocked the rating on this book down for me was a repeated example of an emotionally and physically abusive relationship between a mother and her boyfriend, which was shocking that the author chose such an example while completely ignoring the abuse. Really horrifying to me actually. I plan on re-reading and applying the spirit of the principles presented.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Kari

    So with the major criticism of the emotionally and physically abusive relationship that is repeatedly used as an example throughout the book (I honestly couldn't believe the 'resolution' at the end of the book wasn't that the mom and kid left the abusive boyfriend and instead the boyfriend has a magical 180 and is all into the empathic process), along with other irritating things other reviewers have mentioned, I did like the breakdown of the the empathic, collaborative problem-solving, and I th So with the major criticism of the emotionally and physically abusive relationship that is repeatedly used as an example throughout the book (I honestly couldn't believe the 'resolution' at the end of the book wasn't that the mom and kid left the abusive boyfriend and instead the boyfriend has a magical 180 and is all into the empathic process), along with other irritating things other reviewers have mentioned, I did like the breakdown of the the empathic, collaborative problem-solving, and I think it could be a helpful book for those who tend toward the dictatorial/imposing of solutions but want guidance on a more collaborative problem-solving method.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Steph

    Really liked the ideas in this book. - Kids do well if they can. And they would prefer to do well. - Deal with incompatibilities not the behavior. What skills are they lacking? Lacking proper motivation is not the cause. - Control vs influence, power vs collaboration - “I’ve noticed that [unsolved problem], what’s up?” With reflective listening. Then define adult concerns then collaborative problem solving

  19. 5 out of 5

    Chris Fernandes

    Clearly written. Applicable advice. A very solid approach to changing behavior and solving problems. I have a master's degree in clinical psychology with behaviorial training. It was a difficult transition for me to go from behaviorism to collaborative and proactive solutions but I'm glad that I did. This approach truly is effective. Clearly written. Applicable advice. A very solid approach to changing behavior and solving problems. I have a master's degree in clinical psychology with behaviorial training. It was a difficult transition for me to go from behaviorism to collaborative and proactive solutions but I'm glad that I did. This approach truly is effective.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jenny

    Has some good tips for discussing issues with your child, and they could work with anyone you need to discuss things with. I'm not a fan of the "Plan A, Plan B,..." wording however - I wish authors would just say what they're talking about rather than using coded lingo (hello "The Happiest Toddler on the Block"). Has some good tips for discussing issues with your child, and they could work with anyone you need to discuss things with. I'm not a fan of the "Plan A, Plan B,..." wording however - I wish authors would just say what they're talking about rather than using coded lingo (hello "The Happiest Toddler on the Block").

  21. 4 out of 5

    Alexander Morozov

    Book is short and easy to listen. I liked because it provides concrete recipes and examples of using them over and over. Author's knowledge of parent's minds is just uncanny, it felt like he is reading my mind and provides ways to resolve whatever objections I have. I already tried some of the stuff with my child and it works and it's easier than chaotic parenting I did before. I'm going to buy paper version because of "technical" chapter which has a lot of things I just not able to remember. Book is short and easy to listen. I liked because it provides concrete recipes and examples of using them over and over. Author's knowledge of parent's minds is just uncanny, it felt like he is reading my mind and provides ways to resolve whatever objections I have. I already tried some of the stuff with my child and it works and it's easier than chaotic parenting I did before. I'm going to buy paper version because of "technical" chapter which has a lot of things I just not able to remember.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Ashley

    One of the best parenting books I’ve read. Although the “scenarios” were a little hokey, and there’s an over reliance on jargon, Greene’s clear, everyday language made it easy to understand his method and its benefits.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Stewart Holland

    Absolutely brilliant! A guide not only to solving conflict with your child but out in the world at large!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    Read this before. Still good. Works well with neuro typical people.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Sharon Tiplady

    This is a helpful book for working toward better communication with grade school and older people. The emphasis is on compassion and empathy rather than bossing and insisting that your way is best accompanied punishments and derision. I appreciated the insights I gained.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Erin Acheson

    This was a great time to pick up another Dr Greene book. This is important work and I have plenty of time to practice now.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    I received an ARC of this book via NetGalley. I usually don't read expository nonfiction like this. The title caught my eye, and I thought that reading it might give me some insight into parenting as well as teaching. I was not disappointed, and I'm glad I read this book. I think this will be a book that I will recommend to parents who seriously seek to build better relationships with their kids. For me, a lot of this book was a welcome affirmation for my style of parenting and teaching. When I fi I received an ARC of this book via NetGalley. I usually don't read expository nonfiction like this. The title caught my eye, and I thought that reading it might give me some insight into parenting as well as teaching. I was not disappointed, and I'm glad I read this book. I think this will be a book that I will recommend to parents who seriously seek to build better relationships with their kids. For me, a lot of this book was a welcome affirmation for my style of parenting and teaching. When I first started teaching, I would hear teachers referred to as someone who "runs a tight ship," and I thought that's what I wanted for myself. I eventually realized that running a tight ship is not the way I want to interact with other humans, and this book helped me see why I felt this way. One of the "big ideas" of this book is that parents should respond to their children's unique personalities instead of forcing children to conform to adults' ideals. When children don't meet our expectations, it isn't because they don't want to, but because something is standing in their way. Instead of punishing children for not meeting an expectation, we should have a discussion with them to find out what the obstacle is and to allow them to think about possible solutions on their own. Children should feel heard and valued, and we as adults can do this through inviting them into discussions about our concerns. Greene writes, "There's no doubt that certain aspects of The Real World are about power and control. Certain workplaces are run that way, the legal system tends to work that way, certain countries work that way too, and there's no denying that your child is going to need to know how to handle things when life swings in that direction. But you probably don't want to use autocracies or adversarial systems as your models for good parenting" (location 3487). My favorite parts had to do with how to communicate with very small children, as my children are very small. I loved Greene's treatment of tantrums. Tantrums are so extremely embarrassing and frustrating. He writes, "Regrettably, tantrums have given a bad name--the terrible twos--to this exciting time in a child's development" (location 276). I loved the way Greene helped me reframe my thinking around toddlerhood as an "exciting time in...development" instead of the nightmare it sometimes feels like. "Tantrums," Greene writes, "are simply a signal that there's incompatibility, not a sign that your child is challenging your desire to have influence. Tantrums let you know that your child needs some help sorting things through and that it's time to get the ball rolling on teaching and modeling some important developmental skills such as delay of gratification, expressing concerns in an adaptive manner, taking into account the concerns and needs of other people, frustration tolerance, flexibility, and problem solving. Tantrums are not an indication that your child needs massive doses of Who's the Boss. If you play your cards right, the terrible twos can be a time of tremendous growth, learning, and exploration" (location 283). The book largely explains a procedure that parents can use when discussing concerns with their children. Greene illustrates his ideas with engaging vignettes that serve as examples for how his technique can work. I found the vignettes to be extremely helpful in understanding a variety of ways that children may not meet expectations and how their parents can help them work through it with the same procedure. It was a little weird that Greene called the authoritarian approach "Plan A" and the collaborative approach "Plan B," because to most people, "Plan B" is a term used when the original plan didn't work out, and that's really not what he's saying at all. I wish that Greene had come up with another term that didn't have a rather opposite meaning already. I also liked, though, the idea of "Plan C," which is putting off a problem for another time! As I read, I thought about ways that I have followed Greene's procedure in my classroom without even knowing it. Now that I have this book to look back on, I feel that I can strengthen my "collaborative partnerships" with my students in a more purposeful manner. Greene got me completely on his side when he wrote, "Thankfully, many educators recognize middle school as probably the toughest time of kids' development and play a more compassionate, helpful role" (location 2853). Why, yes, thank you, I try!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jodi Watson

    In our every changing world of parenting, any techniques that you can have in your back pocket is helpful. I gleaned several things from this book - especially since every kid has a unique personality and we seem to get more and more complex in our everyday dealings with life, school, peers, technology. Life is not as simple as it once feels like it was.

  29. 4 out of 5

    David Shepherd

    *Pre-Reading Notes* I’m reading this book because I want to improve my skills as a parent so that I can help my kids reach their full potential so they can have an exponential positive impact on the world. *Post-Reading Summary* Summed up in three sentences or less, the wisdom of this book is this: The old way of training your kids is in-fact, the old way -- the new way that is much more effective and fosters the best characteristics of humanity in your kids is collaborative problem solving: Plan *Pre-Reading Notes* I’m reading this book because I want to improve my skills as a parent so that I can help my kids reach their full potential so they can have an exponential positive impact on the world. *Post-Reading Summary* Summed up in three sentences or less, the wisdom of this book is this: The old way of training your kids is in-fact, the old way -- the new way that is much more effective and fosters the best characteristics of humanity in your kids is collaborative problem solving: Plan B. Behavioral issues are downstream, there's unsolved incompatibility issues with expectations going on upstream that you need to identify and solve collaboratively with your child. Also key is the idea that kids do well if they can -- when you see them struggling it's because they lack the skills they need to do well: skills are the engine and motivation is the caboose.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Emmy Nota

    Excellent read and great way of raising your children. The whole book is centered around one particular (great!) idea, so it does repeat itself several times. However, the idea is so sound that I didn't really mind that much. It has completely changed my idea of raising the kids and for that I owe mr. Greene 5 stars. Excellent read and great way of raising your children. The whole book is centered around one particular (great!) idea, so it does repeat itself several times. However, the idea is so sound that I didn't really mind that much. It has completely changed my idea of raising the kids and for that I owe mr. Greene 5 stars.

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