Well Chicago is now a frozen tundra and there is really nothing going on tonight so I decided to finish Beyond Discipline : Parenting That Lasts a Lifetimeby Edward Christophersen. First of all, I would recommend this book to any parent who was genuinely interested in parenting and behavior. Christophersen understands children and parents at a very deep level. “Beyond Discipline” is shorter, more behavior management specific, and an easier read than “Little People.”
He gives the reader a more comprehensive and considerate view of the child’s perspective than 1-2-3 Magic: Effective Discipline for Children 2-12 (Advice on Parenting) He has chapters on the child’s self- esteem, self-quieting skills, independent play. His chapter on “time-out” is fantastic. I have traditionally thought that too much media can interfere with parent-child interactions (I used to call it “absence-presence”) but to see it framed as an interference with a child’s own “self-quieting” skills will influence how I discuss media in the future with families.
Again, the writing is more narrative than some parents might want, but unlike Christophersen’s other book, “Little People,” there are summary handouts in the back of the book which I thought were more helpful for quick reference. Like any parenting book from 1998, there are some (funny) anachronisms: “One of the most useful recent advances is the cordless phone.” This allows a theoretical parent in Christophersen’s book to give their child lots of “non-verbal touching” (tussling hair, pats etc…) while talking on the phone. How convenient is that!
All in all, a great book. For the sake of full disclosure, I did not realize Christophersen gave my dad’s book, Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child, a shout out until the end of the book: “Suggested Additional Readings.”
As Chicago turns into “Chiberia” tonight, I’ll be reading the next book on behavior: But I’m Almost 13! : Raising a Responsible Adolescent
Daniel Weissbluth, M.D.,F.A.A.P.,S.C.