HELPING YOUR CHILD LEARN RIGHT FROM WRONG: A Guide to Values Clarification by Sidney B. & Sally Wendkos Olds Simon

HELPING YOUR CHILD LEARN RIGHT FROM WRONG: A Guide to Values Clarification

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KIRKUS REVIEW

This is a self-help manual with all the conventional trappings--a gimmicky vocabulary, a multitude of tests and evaluations, model cases, etc.--but the underlying thesis is controversial. Values, the authors insist, cannot be taught. Certainly not by Moralizing, Manipulating, or Modeling (this last decorative alliterative means simply ""setting an example""). But the process of arriving at values can be taught. After explicating seven neat steps for acting consistently upon one's values, the authors plunge into a large collection of games for the family group--exercises which force individuals, alone and in relation to others, to look more closely at themselves, their hates and loves, their goals, the people they care about and who care about them. (Write down priority lists, pretend you're a book, design the perfect birthday, review your week, plot your life, etc., etc.) It all amounts to endlessly inventive consciousness-raising. But as for learning ""fight from wrong,"" the difficulty is that ethical conduct is usually construed as behavior within the context of the experiential judgment of society at large. A child, for example, may decide to cheat on an exam because he values peer approval and is willing to take the risk involved--but he may not be able to judge the long-term effects on the educational institution (and his own behavioral integrity). A bit slick and pat--but useful for informal sensitivity sessions at school or upstairs.

Pub Date: June 1st, 1976
Publisher: Simon & Schuster