In First Feelings (1985), pediatrician Greenspan described the stages of a child's emotional development. Here, we get practical advice on building "the essential partnership" between parent and child that fosters that development. Parents are shown how to take specific steps to encourage a child's emotional growth just as they do his or her intellectual growth. The Greenspans suggest that parents create regular, unstructured "floor time" with their children. The goal of these specially setaside times is real engagement—children learning to interact pleasurably with another person, to "connect" on an emotional level, and eventually to speak and to reason about their feelings. The authors discuss mood and self-esteem, sexuality and excitement, anger, separation anxiety, fear, and competitiveness—and use numerous vignettes and sample dialogues to show how their method works with children between infancy and five or six years of age. A refreshing, much-needed guidebook—with clear, friendly explanations designed specifically to the intelligent steering of a process that's too often left largely to chance.
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