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How Toddlers Thrive: What Parents Can Do Today for Children Ages 2-5 to Plant the Seeds of Lifelong Success
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How Toddlers Thrive: What Parents Can Do Today for Children Ages 2-5 to Plant the Seeds of Lifelong Success [Format Kindle]

Tovah P Klein

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Descriptions du produit


How Toddlers Thrive

chapter one

Setting Up Toddlers to Thrive

Self-Regulation and the Key to True Success

Why do toddlers drive parents crazy?

Maya, having just turned three, reported to her mom that she was a big girl now. She was fully toilet trained and recently moved out of the crib into her “big girl bed.” The Monday after her birthday party, Maya woke up with exuberance and announced, “I can get dressed all by myself!” Unlike past mornings when she battled to get dressed or simply to pick out clothes, today she was ready to be on her own. “Go away, mommy, and I’ll surprise you.” Maya picked out her full outfit and got dressed—shirt, pants, socks, and even hair clips. She proudly announced this success to her family and sat down to eat breakfast, without the usual morning battle.

Her mother was thrilled and sure they had gotten past the worst of her toddler behavior. Maya chatted away, and then put some toys in her backpack, ready to head off to her toddler preschool. But it wasn’t time to leave yet. Her mother suggested they read a book. Maya happily picked out a book and plopped down on her mom’s lap to read. It was a calm and affectionate moment. While reading the book, they turned the page to a drawing of the book character eating pink ice cream. The mother read the words to accompany it.

As happy as ever, Maya jumped up. “I want ice cream, too!” she announced and marched toward the kitchen. Her mother kindly explained that they didn’t eat ice cream in the morning, and besides, they did not have any. In mere seconds, Maya crumpled to the floor, insistent on the ice cream, now screaming and yelling, devastated that there was no pink ice cream for her.

Her mother again explained that they did not have it, but she would buy chocolate ice cream (Maya’s favorite) at the store while Maya was at school.

“Nooooooo!” screamed Maya. “I need pink ice cream. Pink ice cream now!” Her mother felt helpless and frustrated as she struggled to get Maya, still flailing on the floor, in her coat and out the door for school.

What just happened? her mother wondered. Just five minutes before we were in this lovely moment, she had dressed herself, and now she is back to that irrational, demanding baby again.

• The Toddler Paradox: What’s Going on Inside •

Toddlers: They love us, they hate us.

They seem carefree and secure one minute, playing with confidence, and afraid of their own shadows the next, fiercely clinging to our leg.

They act and speak rationally one moment and irrationally the next, screaming because we cut their bread the “wrong way.”

They want to stay glued to our sides, seemingly helpless and completely dependent one day, and then push us away in fierce independence the next, yelling, “I can do it myself!”

They act like big kids one moment, feeding and dressing themselves, being polite—and then are helpless babies the next, unable to do anything for themselves.

They are laughing and full of joy one moment, and whining and in a full meltdown the next because of a simple “No.”

You get the picture. Toddler behavior is often paradoxical: they seem to swing between extremes for no apparent reason—or at least, this is the way it looks to us adults. The behavior of toddlers is often mystifying, confusing, and downright challenging. Why do their moods and their actions seem so erratic and hard to predict? How can we love them with all our hearts, but feel so powerless in the face of their crazy-making behavior? The answer to these questions is found when we peek inside their brains and understand what makes toddlers tick.

•  •  •

Tanya was a quiet and observant two-year-old. She took her time before deciding which activity to do each day at our center and avoided being near children who were playing in a physical manner. I worked with her parents to help her feel more comfortable with her physical abilities and not be so afraid of physical play. By the end of the year, she was becoming more comfortable.

Her parents returned to see me when she was three and a half. They were confused. They described Tanya as being “a kind and sweet little girl,” but now she was also “rude,” they said. They didn’t understand why. They reported that she had become more confident and outgoing at school and easily made friends. She tried more things on her own. She was less afraid of making mistakes. They were proud of these attributes. Then they described some recent incidents.

The mother explained, “When we get into the elevator at our apartment, Tanya is sometimes approached by a woman who asks her what her name is. Instead of answering, Tanya hides behind my leg and very loudly yells, ‘I don’t like you. Be quiet!’ Now if we get in the elevator and she sees this woman, she does not wait for her to say anything. She just screams at her, ‘I don’t like you!’ I am so embarrassed.”

Sound like a rude behavior? From an adult point of view it is, but Tanya does not mean to be rude. More than likely, Tanya behaved the way she did because she felt like a small person in a crowded elevator. Maybe she is frightened by the woman she hardly knows, or unsure of herself, or put on the spot. All could explain her desire to not interact and instead close down the situation.

•  •  •

What I’ve observed again and again in these paradoxes is that our children often trigger well-meaning parents to try to control or fix their kids’ “bad” behavior, without seeing the underlying need behind the behavior. I understand why this happens. A child’s actual need can be hard to decipher. Toddlers often do not communicate in straightforward ways.

What children are expressing through this chaotic, turbulent way of acting is actually fairly transparent: sometimes they feel in control of the big world they have just become a part of and are eager to explore and get to know, and sometimes they are completely overwhelmed by this same world, which can lead to feelings of anger, worry, fear, or a need for comfort. Sometimes they are able to brush their teeth and get into bed like mom or dad has requested; other times, this request to leave their toys or the family room where mom and dad have just been sitting around the television feels like being excommunicated from the family. Go to bed and be left all alone in that dark, scary bedroom without you? Are you kidding me?

Children are not mini adults. They don’t think like we do. They don’t see the world like we see it. Toddlers are not thinking ahead of themselves. They cannot. They are beings tied amazingly to the present tense, thinking only about themselves and wanting to feel safe, loved, taken care of, and yet independent all at once.

And this is true even when toddlers seem to be acting in ways that feel adult-like: When they talk back rudely. When they walk away callously or suddenly have very specific opinions about food they will eat or clothes they will wear. Again, this behavior may confuse parents. They try to meet the child’s “expressed” need or demand, but what is expressed may not really be what the child needs deeper down. And that’s what we are going to do: learn to decipher toddler behavior so that you can help your child learn to manage the world on his or her own—and not through controlling their behavior but by guiding them.

Many parents who come to see me start the conversation with some variation of this question: “What happened to my darling little baby?”

So what is going on during the transition from being a baby to being a toddler?

As children transition from infancy to toddlerhood, they are now moving around on their own, they are talking and talking back, they suddenly have opinions, and they can refuse food, naps, and baths. They have their own desires, and when they want something, they want it now! Our wonderful, lovely, dependent babies vanish overnight and in their place are sometimes whiny, demanding, still-adorable imposters. Who are these little rascals who are still so cute and yet so monstrous? Who need us but don’t want us? Who seem driven not by distraction but by an unstoppable inner desire to explore the world and all that is around them with their eyes, feet, hands, noses, ears, and yes, even their tongues?

When they don’t behave, or they act out, or they seem to ignore our directions, we resort to certain tactics: We want them to follow our rules, be good, and behave. We cajole, beg, and bribe them with rewards. We pray and hope that by example they will model themselves after us and our good behavior. Sometimes we resort to threatening them. Or yelling at them. If we’re lucky, when our toddler is really working our last nerve we can pass a child off to a babysitter or to a teacher or to a spouse and just walk away. Then, of course, our willful, strong-natured toddlers who just a minute ago didn’t seem to care for us at all are suddenly blue in the face with anger and frustration. They want us! They need us! Come baaaack!

These scenarios probably seem familiar. Parenting a toddler sometimes feels like a battle that can’t be won. Most of us have felt totally helpless in the face of our toddler at one time or another. Or maybe even many times. But it doesn’t have to be like this. It may be hard to believe, but life with our toddlers can actually be calm, fun, and enjoyable. The problem is that helping our children b...

Revue de presse

“If only there was one single, sensible, sympathetic book that answered all your toddler questions. Well there is. And you're holding it: An easy-to-read source that explains what toddlers do, why they do it, and whether you have to jump in or not. The good news is: Often the answer is ‘not.’” (Lenore Skenazy, author of Free-Range Kids: How to Raise Safe, Self-Reliant Kids (Without Going Nuts With Worry))

“In this wonderful book, Tovah Klein draws on her deep understanding of toddlers and their development to offer a treasure-trove of wise and practical advice. Placing a special emphasis on seeing the world through toddlers' eyes, Klein shows how we can help them meet life's challenges with confidence and enthusiasm. How Toddlers Thrive will be cherished by parents and professionals alike.” (William Crain, author of Reclaiming Childhood: Letting Children Be Children in Our Achievement-Oriented Society)

"Dr. Klein's wonderful book is a parenting milestone, unraveling the mysteries of your toddler while helping you create a clear path for his or her future happiness and success." (Harley A. Rotbart, M.D., author of No Regrets Parenting: Turning Long Days and Short Years into Cherished Memories with Your Kids)

"Rarely does someone with so much knowledge write in a way that is so accessible and heart warming. What Tovah has created will help every parent stand on their own loving ground, assured that they are creating the foundations for their child to grow into an adult who will have a deep sense of purpose and the will to effect much needed change." (Kim John Payne, author of Simplicity Parenting, Beyond Winning and The Soul of Discipline)

"Dr. Klein has provided a critical resource for parents -- she combines state-of-the-science research with examples of and practical guidelines for everyday toddler-parent interactions. Most importantly, Dr. Klein appreciates that every toddler and parent is unique and therefore, there is no single parenting 'recipe.'" (Nim Tottenham, Ph.D., developmental neuroscientist at UCLA)

"Tovah Klein’s book is as much about parenting as it is about toddlers. Like a wise and practiced friend, she introduces us to the world of toddlers, helping us understand the wonder, worry, and bewilderment toddlers experience and the challenges and joys of parenting them. The book is filled with fabulous advice, informative anecdotes, and a point of view that teaches you to trust yourself no matter how demanding your little ones may seem to be." (Samuel J. Meisels, Executive Director of the Buffett Early Childhood Institute at the University of Nebraska)

“There are a lot of parenting books out there, but this one is unique--- it's told from the point of view of the child! Dr. Klein's firsthand experiences with young children provides parents an understanding of child development within the context of family dynamics. She doesn't judge parents, instead she empowers them with knowledge about the whys behind their children's behaviors.” (Rosemarie T. Truglio, PhD, SVP of Curriculum and Content for Sesame Workshop)

“Child psychologist Klein, director of the Barnard Center for Toddler Development, has a keen understanding of what makes toddlers tick. . . . Parents of the 2–5 set will find plenty of practical ideas and strategies to make the preschool years less stressful, creating what Klein describes as a relaxed and loving ‘toddlertopia.’“ (Publishers Weekly)

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 2195 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 304 pages
  • Editeur : Touchstone (18 février 2014)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B00DPM7V20
  • Synthèse vocale : Non activée
  • X-Ray :
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°201.744 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 4.4 étoiles sur 5  19 commentaires
9 internautes sur 10 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Planting the seeds of lifelong success 24 février 2014
Par Thomas Fiorella Jr - Publié sur
A great start. That what this author is asking us to create for our toddlers. But, how to you create a great start for your child?

The author, a psychologist and head of a research center and nursery school argues that you must must first understand how the brain of a toddler works so that you can help him or her thrive on her terms. This is different than the instincts of most parents, and many books, where you hope to learn how to make kids listen. And, it's different than controlling kids' 'childish' or 'self-centered' whims or shaming them into following our rules.

When you're thinking about some common parenting challenge, like getting 2-4 year-olds to share, you need to learn what the experts know about toddler's brains and incorporate that knowledge into what she calls your 'Parenting POV.' Then you you can re-frame the problem both in your mind and during your time with your child. You are freed to stop banging your head against a brick wall because you understand what your child is capable of.

When we, as parents understand that 2-year-olds have no capacity to share, that they can't understand that concept, then we can stop being embarrassed when they take things from other kids. We can stop stressing and sounding like a broken record. The author gives us some strategies to re-frame the situation (have two or more of certain loved toys available for play dates. Use language like "I see that you are playing with that truck. It looks like XXX (another child) wants to play too. When you are finished, she can play."

This is not a one size fits all book. You gotta think about your background and what you bring to your relationship with your child. But you get piles of smart advice that helps you slow down, relax, re-frame and give (what this expert knows) is a better response to the common challenges of parenting a young child.
10 internautes sur 12 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Great advice for All Parents about How Toddlers Think, Develop, and Thrive 2 mars 2014
Par Caryn Talty - Publié sur
I was given a review copy of this book prior to the official release date. Any parent looking for insight into ways they can better connect with their toddler will be satisfied with this book. I know I was. As a mother of 4, I've experienced my share of toddler meltdowns. Klein does a nice job weaving stories of toddlers and their parents in situations and how they may have handled them differently. She really focuses on how you can create a meaningful relationship with your child and steers clear of 'stock' advice and generalizations about toddlers. I felt like I was really getting an expert opinion. My only wish is for an audio version for listening in the car while running errands. But this is a book the average parent can dip into rather than read cover to cover. The chapters are broken up nicely by topic and don't necessarily need to be read in order, however I do think the first three chapters should be read in order.
5 internautes sur 6 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Great Book 14 mars 2014
Par Renee - Publié sur
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
This is a very informative and well written book for the parents of toddlers. I enjoyed reading it and have already changed the way I interact with my little kids!
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Great Resource for Parents!!!! 16 juillet 2014
Par pedsGI - Publié sur
As a pediatrician and a mother of a demanding toddler, I was looking for a resource to help guide me and others manage the difficult toddler years. Tovah's book was enlightening. It addressed all the issues I was having and made a huge difference in our daily lives. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who needs a little guidance in dealing with a demanding toddler. Very easy to read and nice anecdotes that are amusing and easy to relate to!
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Great book! 10 juillet 2014
Par Carolyn M. - Publié sur
Great book! Also I heard Dr. Klein speak at an event and she is so informative. I highly recommend the book.
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