Skip to main content

Books you should read!: “The Whole Brain Child: 12 Revolutionary Strategies to Nurture Your Child’s Developing Mind, Survive Everyday Parenting Struggles, and Help Your Family Thrive.”


Parents frequently ask me for books they could read to help them in supporting their child or their relationship  with their child. One of the books that I suggest most frequently is Daniel Siegel’s: “The Whole Brain Child: 12 Revolutionary Strategies to Nurture Your Child’s Developing Mind, Survive Everyday Parenting Struggles, and Help Your Family Thrive.”

If you are having frequent moments where your child’s behaviour baffles or infuriates you then this book might have something to offer to you. Understanding how children's brains function in moments of calm and stress can dramatically enrich the parenting experiences. This book is one of the few books available that insightfully integrates the growing body of research  on children’s developing brains with practical parenting strategies.

The over arching premise of this book is that parent’s can influence and better understand their children’s actions through understanding their brains. From minor annoyances to major freak outs- the better we understand the systems responsible for them the better we can help kids whilst in them and help them too get to those uncomfortable places less often.

At the core of anything we do to support children is the relationship between the caregiver and the child. This simple truth underlies all of the strategies described and shared by Siegel.

Siegel takes a complex topic and explains it in an engaging and insightful manner. As someone who has read most of the heavy hitters in the parenting and child development cannon, this book is an easy pick as one of my favorites given it’s practicality, accessibility and valuable information.

It is available at most major book sellers and has e-reader versions as well as audiobook. There is also a parent skills workbook available based on the book that is also widely available and a good resource.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Five tips for helping our children and all of us feel better about our bodies

First off- I know I’m a man. I know the way I interact with the world and the experiences I’ve had are unique to having been embodied as a male. I know my brain, chemistry and development is a little different and  I in no way presume to be able to fully understand the experience of being a girl or a woman in the world. Further, I think any discussion of bodies can be intimate and vulnerable and as such I’m cautious in even writing something, especially as a man writing about female teenage bodies.

But here’s the thing- I’m not really writing about bodies- I’m writing about brains. There are some small changes that we can all make in our parenting or interactions with young people that can go a long way towards promoting healthy body image. Sadly, concerns about our bodies are common and can dramatically impact how well we do in the world around us.

It turns out we are not great at guessing how we look to others. Authors of a German study a couple of years ago found that about 50% of …

Read This With Your Kids!: The Invisible String

The Invisible String by Patrice Karst is an important reminder of how we are connected to those we love and care about.

The Invisible String is about two children who get scared from a storm during the night and seek out connection with their mom. Their mom then shares an important lesson she learned as a child about an invisible string that connects us to those that we care about, no matter how far away they are, or if they have passed on. We can feel and send tugs on the invisible string when we need a douse of connection.



While reading a book to our child is awesome as is, stopping to ask some questions can help with comprehension and the ability to personalize the story. So here are some talking points:
You can ask your child if they have ever felt tugs on the invisible string?When grief is brought up, you can discuss family members and friends that you still feel connected to even after a loss.At the conclusion of the book, ask who are some people you are connected to by an invisi…

Children and Loss: How to support children when bad things happen

Loss is a painful but inevitable part of life. Children regularly experience small losses like misplacing a favorite toy, changing plans away from something they were looking forward to or not being allowed the candy bar they had their heart set on. Sadly, childhood often also includes more intense loss like a beloved friend moving away, a pet dying, disasters such as flooding or house-fires, the reorganization of a family unit through divorce, or the death of someone close to us.

We can feel a variety of emotions when new lose something we care about. Sadness, or emotional pain, is always at the core of this. Sadness is a powerful and uncomfortable emotion. We love our children and don’t want them to hurt. However, it is important to remember that sadness is a healthy response to loss.

When we lose something rewarding to us we feel sad. We feel sad as a way to promote continued engagement with the things we find rewarding. If we did not feel sad we might be less motivated to search …