HOW TO GET YOUR CHILDREN TO DO WHAT YOU WANT THEM TO DO by

HOW TO GET YOUR CHILDREN TO DO WHAT YOU WANT THEM TO DO

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Although the title suggests a throwback to the rigid authoritarianism of the past, the text does not. Wood and Schwartz are asserting that while some behaviors have options, others ire not negotiable--and parents must recognize when demands must be made; unfortunately some of the sample cases are highly questionable. Like many books on the subject, this has its own pet concepts--Parental Pitfalls 1, 2, and 3--illustrated in numerous examples of adults giving mixed signals, speaking imprecisely, or doubting the possibility of change. Unlike Gordon, Ginott, and like-minded theorists, Wood and Schwartz maintain that the direct expression of a demand will eliminate almost any offensive behavior, even for problems like enuresis and for kids in adolescence. Some examples seem far-fetched, such as a woman who virtually condoned her son's trash fires because all kids play with matches; parents like that do need to assert their authority, but clearly other factors are operative. The authors are closer to the target in emphasizing the difference between saying ""if you. . ."" and ""when you. . ,"" and in quietly acknowledging that ""there is a price one has to pay for making demands."" They would sound more convincing if they discussed when demands are not necessary--which can be much of the time--and if fewer of the cases cited did not involve bed-wetting and toilet-training.

Pub Date: March 30th, 1977
Publisher: Prentice-Hall