- Paperback: 272 pages
- Publisher: Atria Books; 1 edition (April 1, 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0743487486
- ISBN-13: 978-0743487481
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.4 inches
- Shipping Weight: 227 g
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #881 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Unconditional Parenting: Moving from Rewards and Punishments to Love and Reason Paperback – 28 March 2006
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"Powerful alternatives to help children become their most caring, responsible selves." -- Adele Faber, coauthor of How to Talk So Kids Will Listen . . .
About the Author
Alfie Kohn is the author of nine previous books, including Punished by Rewards and The Schools Our Children Deserve, that have helped to shape the thinking of parents and educators across the country and abroad. He lectures widely and lives (actually) with his family in the Boston area and (virtually) at www.alfiekohn.org.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
This book is not about quick fixes, or easy strategies to get your child to "behave". It's about avoiding punishments and bribes that result only in "short term compliance at an extremely high cost", and opting for an approach of working with your child, instead. The second part of his book discusses in great length, with examples, ways that we can work with our children.
I don't agree completely with Kohn's removal of all parental praise - when his daughter climbed the stairs for the first time, he didn't applaud or freak out, he just said matter of factly "you did it". I'm more in the exuberant praise for major accomplishments category. However, I found his argument against using praise as a means of control extremely compelling. Don't praise your kid overly for putting his jacket on, because you want him to keep getting himself ready for school. Do celebrate (in my opinion) your children's accomplishments that they're proud of by sharing in their joy and applauding them also.
If I could get every parent to read this book, I would. I am so grateful that I discovered Alfie Kohn's work when my sons were preschool age. I believe this could help me raise resilient kids who feel loved, who trust me to be on their side, and who are at lower risk for dangerous behaviors as teenagers because they've had an opportunity to learn the real consequences of actions - not that mom or dad will be mad, but that now something is broken and needs to be repaired, or they may have to choose a different college, or mom was up late worrying because they weren't home. Punishments and bribes obscure the real reason we should do something, make our kids feel conditionally loved, and don't have positive long-term impacts on behavior.