NurtureShock by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman

Subtitled “New Thinking About Children,” shows how some of the new paradigms in education and childrearing are not supported by research data.

I had already read some of NurtureShock, since several of the chapters began as articles in “New York” magazine. It’s pretty fun to watch the authors pick apart some current sacred cows, like the purported virtues of educational baby DVDs, or the merits of testing kindergarteners to track them into gifted programs, or the benefits of teaching thankfulness. As a parent myself, I was really gratified to see that I’m not the only one who gets paralyzed by all the mixed messages. The book affirmed that you have to treat your kids like individuals, not generalizations.

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