"If there is anything that we wish to change in the child, we should first examine it and see whether it is not something that could better be changed in ourselves." ~C.G. Jung, Integration of the Personality, 1939
I did read many parenting books when my kids were younger. I just didn't realize until later that they were the wrong ones! I listened to the wrong experts and used the wrong methods. Of course I didn't know it then, but all the signs were there. It wasn't until I stopped listening to all the experts and started listening to my children, that I began to actually learn something. I learned that the greatest teachers lived in my own home. And though I believed we were raising children, our children actually, were raising parents.
Once we brought awareness into our own habits and had a strong desire to change them, we needed support. Once I knew what I was looking for, the right books, the right ideas, and the right methods began to appear. The first book I ever read that helped us take the first steps towards change was How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk. Even then, we had no idea that more changes had to happen from within. But at least we had the tools to try to stop yelling, stop assuming, and stop controlling. It was a great place to start.
We eventually had to ask ourselves the "why's". Why did we have to control so much? Why were we so quick to yell? Why did we believe things had to be a certain way? Naomi Aldort's work really helped us in this part of the process, and it is her work that I want to pass on today :).
Trusting Our Children and Trusting Ourselves is a 6 disc CD compilation of 6 keynote presentations by Naomi Aldort at the Rethinking Education conference in 1995. While her book remains excellent, this CD compilation extends from parenting peacefully into understanding how natural learning works. Naomi is a strong proponent for life learning and raised all three of her children this way.
Disc 1) Rethinking Education: Debunking common assumptions about child development.
Disc 2, CD 1) Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves Part I: Bring peace and unconditional love into your relationship with your children by understanding your own reaction as different from your child's needs.
Disc 2, CD 2) Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves Part II.
Disc 3) Debunking Praise: Find out why you really praise and at what price.
Disc 4) Children's Behavior and Emotions: Includes many questions from audience members, and Aldort's skillful guidance about understanding children so they can be the best of themselves.
Disc 5) Self Directed Learning: Why children learn best when they follow their own path, timetable and direction, and how to support them toward their own fulfillment.
Disc 6) Equality, Respect and Freedom for Children: From chores to bed time and dinner; how to live with children in a way that they care and respond, not out of fear, but out of joy and love, of their own free will.
Last entries will be taken by midnight Friday, I will draw and announce the winner this Saturday May 7th!!!
much love and luck