Some influential books on education, and we tell you why…

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Children Learn What They Live: Parenting to Inspire Values by Dorothy Law Nolte

Wikipedia:  Dorothy Law Nolte (January 12, 1924 – November 6, 2005) was an American writer and family counselor. She wrote a poem on childrearing, “Children Learn What They Live,” for a weekly family column for TheTorrance Herald in 1954. The poem was widely circulated by readers as well as distributed to millions of new parents by a maker of baby formula. She copyrighted it in 1972, and in 1998 expanded it into a book, co-authored with Rachel Harris, “Children Learn What They Live: Parenting to Inspire Values.” At the time of Mrs. Nolte’s death, the book had more than 3 million copies in print worldwide and had been translated into 18 languages, according to its publisher, Workman Publishing.

Intelligence Reframed: Multiple Intelligences for the 21st Century by Howard Gardner
Review: Intelligence Reframed presents itself as a progress report on how the theory of multiple intelligences has changed and evolved since it was first set forth in Howard Gardner’s 1983 book Frames of Mind. The theory posits that intelligence is not a single property of the human mind, as is commonly believed, but rather that each human being is endowed with a set of several intelligences each of which can be nurtured and channeled in specific ways.

According to Gardner, there are seven distinct intelligences that can be linked to their own neurological substrate: linguistic intelligence (sensitivity to the spoken and written word and the ability to master languages), logical-mathematical intelligence (the capacity to analyze problems logically and scientifically), musical intelligence (skill in the performance, composition, and appreciation of music), bodily-kinesthetic intelligence (as exemplified by dancers, surgeons, and artists), spatial intelligence (characteristic of pilots, graphic artists, and architects), interpersonal intelligence (a talent for understanding and relating to other people) and intrapersonal intelligence (the capacity for understanding oneself).

The purposes of Intelligence Reframed, as Gardner explains in the book’s opening pages, is to assess how the theory of multiple intelligences has been assimilated into the culture, to dispel some of the myths that have proliferated around the theory, to examine its practical applications, as well as to survey the evidence for additional varieties of intelligence. Overall, the book provides an excellent summary and overview of Gardner’s theory and how it is being applied today, one that is both concise and readily accessible. Read more here

Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman

Review: Emotional Intelligence – EQ – is a relatively recent behavioural model, rising to prominence with Daniel Goleman’s 1995 Book called ‘Emotional Intelligence’. The early Emotional Intelligence theory was originally developed during the 1970s and 80s by the work and writings of psychologists Howard Gardner (Harvard), Peter Salovey (Yale) and John ‘Jack’ Mayer (New Hampshire). Emotional Intelligence is increasingly relevant to organizational development and developing people, because the EQ principles provide a new way to understand and assess people’s behaviours, management styles, attitudes, interpersonal skills, and potential. Emotional Intelligence is an important consideration in human resources planning, job profiling, recruitment interviewing and selection, management development, customer relations and customer service, and more.

Emotional Intelligence links strongly with concepts of love and spirituality: bringing compassion and humanity to work, and also to ‘Multiple Intelligence’ theory which illustrates and measures the range of capabilities people possess, and the fact that everybody has a value.

The EQ concept argues that IQ, or conventional intelligence, is too narrow; that there are wider areas of Emotional Intelligence that dictate and enable how successful we are. Success requires more than IQ (Intelligence Quotient), which has tended to be the traditional measure of intelligence, ignoring essential behavioural and character elements. We’ve all met people who are academically brilliant and yet are socially and inter-personally inept. And we know that despite possessing a high IQ rating, success does not automatically follow.

Different approaches and theoretical models have been developed for Emotional Intelligence. This summary article focuses chiefly on the Goleman interpretation. The work of Mayer, Salovey and David Caruso (Yale) is also very significant in the field of Emotional Intelligence, and will in due course be summarised here too. — Businessballs

The heart of parenting: Raising an emotionally intelligent child by John Gottman
Review: Gottman, a University of Washington psychology professor and author of Why Marriages Succeed or Fail, has studied family dynamics for more than 20 years. His observations lead him to divide parents into two categories: those who do and those who don’t use the technique he calls “”emotion coaching.”” With writer DeClaire, he begins by noting the obvious: good parenting involves emotion as well as intellect; parenting style has lifelong consequences. Giving credit to the work of late psychologist Haim Ginott and getting a nod from Emotional Intelligence author Daniel Goleman (who provides an intro), Gottman defines the five steps of “”emotion coaching””: being aware of the child’s emotions; recognizing the presence of emotion as an opportunity for intimacy and teaching; listening empathically and validating the child’s feelings; helping the child to verbally label emotions; setting limits and problem-solving. He says that his studies demonstrate that children who are “”emotion-coached”” learn better, get along well with others and are physically healthier and socially better adapted than children who have not had such “”coaching.””Questionnaires with which parents can determine their style and measure their emotional awareness are included, as is a bibliography. For parents to whom emotional nurturing doesn’t come easily, Gottman’s approach offers reasons and methods for attending to one’s child’s emotional growth — Pub Weekly
— Publishers Weekly
The book that caused whirlwinds in many teacups and on many talkshows – read more here

This article“James Dobson: Leader of the `Focus on the Family’ cult” gives insights into the key figures of what the author calls the “Focus on the Family” cult that drove, drives Conservative America

Teach your child how to think by Edward de Bono

Book blurb:
Today’s kids have life-and-death choices to make.
Are you going to wait until schools start to teach thinking directly to your children? That may be too late. Thinking is the most fundamental of human skills but education does very little about it. Where is ‘thinking’ in the curriculum?
The belief that intelligence and thinking are the same has led to some unfortunate conclusions:
Students with high intelligence are automatically good thinkers.
Students with low intelligence can never be good thinkers.
The more information you have the smarter you are.
Wisdom can’t be taught…it comes with age and experience.
Our increasingly complicated lifestyle demands clear and constructive thinking: making decisions, making choices, taking initiatives, and being creative. Watching television for twenty to thirty hours a week, as many children do, results in a passive mind that can only copy what others are doing (including drugs, sex and violence). Give your child a better chance in life. Thinking is a skill….even a superior brain is wasted without it. You can start to teach your child how to think now.
With examples, exercises, games, and drawings, Dr de Bono, a Rhodes scholar and leading authority on the direct teaching of thinking, demonstrates the difference between intelligence and thinking, and provides a step-by-step method for helping children develop clear and constructive thinking. Even one or two thinking habits taken from his book and given to your children may strongly affect their life.
Edward de Bono’s CoRT programme is the most widely used international method of direct teaching of thinking in schools.

Children are from heaven by John Gray (author of Men are from Mars…)

Review: John Gray shows you how to raise a child to experience everything they can and enjoy a successful life. He explains the different skills of positive parenting to help improve communication, increase cooperation and motivate your children.
Children do not need to be motivated through fear and punishment. Instead, they are more easily moved by reward and the natural desire to please their parents. John Gray gives solutions for the challenges of every modern family that has the tendency to be consumer-driven and overscheduled

Education in contemporary Japan: Inequality and diversity by Kaori Okano and Motonori Tsuchiya

One reviewer wrote: “To my mind it is the best work of this author.”

Review: A balanced introduction to and examination of contemporary Japanese education. While the postwar system of schooling has provided valuable ingredients for economic success, it has been accompanied by unfavourable developments such as excessively competitive exams, stifling uniformity, bullying, and an undervaluing of non-Japanese ethnicity. This book offers up-to-date information and new perspectives on schooling in contemporary Japanese society, and uses detailed ethnographic studies and interviews with students and teachers. It examines the main developments of modern schooling in Japan, from the beginning of the Meiji era up to the present, and includes analysis of the most recent reforms. It develops a new picture of the role that schooling plays for individuals and the wider society. Essential reading for students and educators alike.

  • Up-to-date, includes analysis of the most recent reforms
  • Provides a balanced depiction of the benefits and flaws of the Japanese education system
  • Draws extensively on ethnographic studies and participants’ own accounts as ‘insiders’ — by Academic,

How to increase your child’s VERBAL INTELLIGENCE – The Language Wise Method – by Carmen McGuinness and Geoffrey McGuinness
(who pioneered the very successful McGuinness READING REFLEX reading literacy programme that many of us used to teach our kids to how to read). Reviewed here:

Chocolate for a Mother’s Heart by Kay Allen Baugh

Review: Mothers do it all — they teach, listen, guide, and protect. They shelter us from life’s unexpected storms, nurture us into adulthood, and know just when to push us from the nest. Now the creator of the bestselling Chocolate series offers up a rich, soulful celebration of motherhood, one that any woman — mother, daughter, sister, or best friend — will love. Here are more true stories that capture the essence of what it means to be a woman and that honor the unforgettable experience of mothering, from the heartwarming and hilarious to the bittersweet: a mother sending her child off to school, or down the aisle…a mother who knows just what to say and when to say it — or keep it to herself…a stand-in mom who passes for the “real thing” with flying colors…a mother whose intuition never fails….You’re sure to recognize yourself — or your own mom — in the pages of Chocolate for a Mother’s Heart. — Good Reads




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