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The Over-Scheduled Child: Avoiding the Hyper-Parenting Trap Paperback – April 7, 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; Reprint edition (April 7, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312263392
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312263393
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,284,471 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

If you've just sat down after a day that included taking your very intelligent child to a Kumon math tutoring session, shuttling another to soccer practice and piano lessons, supervising the homework of both to make sure it's perfect, and making a midnight trip to the grocery store to pick up the organic grapes for tomorrow's nutritionally balanced lunches, then Hyper-Parenting: Are You Hurting Your Child by Trying Too Hard? is for you. According to authors Alvin Rosenfeld, M.D., and Nicole Wise, there's a lot of this kind of hyper-parenting going on out there. This parenting style can be loosely defined as one that attempts to control everything in a child's environment with the aim of achieving a perfect outcome. It's not realistic or healthy, say the authors. Chapter by chapter, examining everything from parents' reliance on "expert" opinions to the huge impact of media messages on parent behavior, Rosenfeld and Wise make a compelling argument for their premise. They encourage parents to turn the lens inward and ask themselves what messages they are sending--not with their words, but with their behavior. Hyper-Parenting is a book for parents at every stage in the parenting game. It's never too late, or too early, to try to tune out some of the noisy clamor around us and thoughtfully reflect on our values and what we really want for our children. --Virginia Smyth --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

In our society, where parents feel pressured to enroll children in preschool while they are still in utero, this book is a refreshing splash of cool water. In contrast to "winning above all else," Rosenfeld, a child psychiatrist, advocates "just playing" and just spending time with one's children rather than living the overbooked family life of a stereotypical soccer mom. He notes that family schedules are at a breaking point and that parents face a great deal of guilt and anxiety because they cannot give their children everything. He promotes the need for more balance and suggests that parents take to heart Dr. Spock's advice for parents to trust themselves. He further recommends abandoning the notion that parents' lives revolve solely around their children and revisits the concept of children being a part of the daily discourse of a family, where they learn a great deal more about living by having the opportunity to observe adults in an adult world. A wake-up call to parents everywhere; recommended without reservation for public libraries.
-Lisa Powell Williams, Moline P.L., IL
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

It is one of the best parenting books that I've read so far.
"teresals"
In this hypercivilization we're living in, finally there is a parenting book that addresses the insanity in which we've allowed ourselves to be caught up.
Jane Gabbert
This book must be read by every parent with a busy lifestyle.
Gail A. Brewster

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Galvatron on September 13, 2000
Format: Hardcover
If you've fallen victim to seeing parenting as a competitive sport, you need to read this book. Rosen has nothing against Baby Mozart, soccer leagues, and all the other activities that parents and kids adopt for the best intentions. But he and his coauthor are reasonable voices, pointing out that by micromanaging our children's lives, we're giving them the message that they can neither function or make judgments without parental intervention. This is an excellent book that will help both parent and child.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 13, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Dr. Rosenfeld and Nicole Wise remind us of what is really important and valuable in our lives. So many parents, in the process of pushing themselves and their children to win, succeed and outstrip the next guy, lose sight of what truly matters. The authors also remind us of the loss of joy and delight that parents deprive themselves of in the rat race to raise overscheduled and underappreciated kids. A highly readable book for parents which can help them lead more meaningful lives.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Jerry March on January 19, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Hyper-Parenting is perhaps the best parenting book I have ever read. In a world full of opportunities and choices for our kids, its refreshing to get clear, helpful advice from experts who clearly understand what our children are going through. I found this book extremely well-written and useful, and would highly recommend it to any parent who loves his/her children and wants to do what's best.
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37 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Joan on June 30, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Hyper-Parenting possesses the best of intentions, and is not lacking in insight and even, in places, eloquence. But the overall message is confusing and disjointed, and I was left unsatisfied in the end.

One big problem is that what "hyper-parenting" means precisely is never truly established. One chapter criticizes the perfectly natural tendency to cherish a child in the womb. Another chapter discusses stressed children being pressured to ???excel??? in status-laden endeavors. Are both these totally different situations "hyper-parenting?" In one spot we are rightfully reminded that "the important and meaningful connections [with our kids]defy scheduling." But in another place, we are apparently encouraged to schedule yet more time away from the kids "for the things we want to do." Why, so we can be sure to miss those important and meaningful connections? Can the reader be blamed for feeling a little confused?

The authors seem to assume that families are frazzled mostly because parents just take too much time doing things for the kids. Potential stress-builders, according to the book, include not only individualistic activities like music lessons and sports, but also family-building activities like nightly dinner at home. Unstructured family time is praised, but the book's assumption seems to be that this time will be suddenly abundant if we just quit karate. The possibility that Mom and Dad each take 50+ hours a week to work, and that this might be a big contributing factor, basically goes unaddressed. Such a one-sided view of the busyness problems suffered many families is not likely to be very helpful in the real world.

The book is plagued in several spots by poor philosophy.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Reform Enthusiast on January 19, 2000
Format: Hardcover
The authors put their fingers on a real phenomenon: parents over-programming their kids to the detriment of parents and children alike. The first step to solving a problem is admitting it. In clear, straightforward language thankfully free of jargon, Rosenfeld and Wise give the reader an opportunity to reconsider the meaning of good parenting. I discussed the book with two of my kids who responded with a loud "Duh, Dad, didn't you know that?" I admit, I didn't, but I do now.
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Format: Paperback
This book is a tonic for the harried, anxious souls of modern parents. Writing with passion, clarity, and conviction, the authors get to the heart of why we create frantic family schedules in our quest to be perfect parents. I'm afraid that too many parenting books make matters worse by raising the bar even higher for anxious parents who feel they can never do enough. This book shows how to set realistic standards for oneself as a parent, and to keep first things first in the lives of our children. Couldn't be more timely.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Gail A. Brewster on June 27, 2001
Format: Paperback
This book had to be written! It needs to be read by every parent battling the loss of leisure. Setting limits defies the seeming perfect parent syndrom we have adopted. For those of us who have let the rat race control too much of our lives, it's not too late for change. Do you ever have one of those days when you just have to get away from it all, but can't because that unrelenting calendar is demanding every minute of your day? Do you have time to smell the roses, sit and enjoy your child chasing a butterfly, or find a quite romantic moment to spend alone with your spouse - talking about anything but the kids and who has to be where when? If the answer is no to any of these questions, this book is for you. If you have ever been seriously ill, as I have, you realize that it's the little things: the family time, the unscheduled time, the laughs and talks, that, above all else, create an atmospher our children can thrive in. Dr. Rosenfeld and Nicole Wise bring it all into focus, and make us realize that by "doing it all" and "being it all", we are not helping our family, we are breaking down the fabrics that holds the best part of it together. This book must be read by every parent with a busy lifestyle. It's refreshing to know that we can stop hyper-parenting and start learning again to have spontaneity, relaxation and a place we can truly feel at home.
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