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Your Self-Confident Baby: How to Encourage Your Child's Natural Abilities -- From the Very Start Paperback – February, 2012
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Readers will find plenty of wisdom and common sense on these pages. -- Publisher's Weekly, January 1998
This book gave me a practical guide to giving my children enough room... has been an amazing resource for me. -- O, Oprah's Magazine, May 2005, by Felicity Huffman --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Here are the main points that I found to be useful:
1. Have respect for the baby. He is a person, not a pet. If you need to do something to him,
let him know (now it's time to change your diaper....). This is similar to how a doctor talks you through a procedure beforehand so that you prepare for it mentally. I must say that these ideas are not entirely novel. Writings of Maria Montessori advocate respect for the child (see for example Secret of Childhood. Also, talking to your baby about what's going on is suggested by Bright from the Start: The Simple, Science-Backed Way to Nurture Your Child's Developing Mindfrom Birth to Age 3. I can't remember where else I read about asking for permission from non-verbal babies (e.g. "Would you like me to pick you up now?") but I liked the idea, and has worked for me and my 2-year old. As a child what I hated most was relatives kissing and pinching my cheeks when I did not want that. My boy knows he has a choice in things that involve his body - he is not my property.
2. Crying is not the end of the world. I am one of those parents who feels like I have been stabbed in between my shoulders when my baby cries. I have, over time, figured out what different cries mean, and have relaxed. I still, however, immediately pick up my child when the cry is genuine (hurt, tired, etc.Read more ›
* Basic trust in the child to be an initiator, an explorer, and a self-learner
* Time for uninterrupted play
* An environmnet for the child that is physically safe, cognitively challenging, and emotionally nurturing
* Involvement of the child in all caregiving activities to allow it to become an active participant rather than a passive recipient
* Sensitive observation of the child in order to understand her needs
* Consistency and clearly defined limits and expectations to develop discipline
A couple of examples given in the book covers getting your child to sleep and communication. RIE recommends that you always put your child to bed awake. Why? Babies are aware of their surroundings. If a baby is lying in the living room and wakes up in a bed, it is confusing for the child. Another example is talking to your child. When you are going to change a diaper, it's recommended that you communicate this to your child and ask for her cooperation. This allows the child the opportunity to process this information and prepare for the activity as well as enable them to become a participant rather than a recipient.
I finished this book and found it extremely illuminating. For me, the things that stood out (i.e., things I didn't think about while around babies) are:
* Talk to the Baby, not about it
* Treat the Baby as a person not as an object. They have feelings and those feelings should be respected.Read more ›
Primary times for interacting with your child are diapering, feeding and bathing. These times are no longer tasks to be hurried through, but moments of communication and interaction that set the stage for a lifetime of relating.
The book also addresses the needs of parents. It is the first book I have read that truly deals with the family as a unit. Realizing that parents also have needs and are better at parenting when these needs for rest and time apart from the infant are met was very helpful.
Also helpful were the ideas around creating safe areas for Noah to play in ... both indoors and out as a way for him to have space and time alone.
Allowing Noah to have his feelings when something comes up that doesn't suit him was another area that the book deals with. It is ok to be mad or upset or uncomfortable...and as a parent not to distract my son from being upset, which seems to be a knee-jerk response at times. It never occurred to me that just acknowleging Noah's feelings was enough. I didn't have to give in to all the demands to keep peace in the house. In fact, our home is very peaceful since implementing Gerber's ideas.
This is more than just a parenting book. It has helped me be more present with my son.
I only wish I would have discovered this book before we had our son so that I could have done some of the things she suggests earlier in Noah's life.
It is a book that I enthusiastically recommend.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I was excited to order the book, and agree with some of the principles, but not all of the advice is practical advice for first time parents.Published 1 month ago by Ziggy
If you are agree with the life philosophy of Jose Mujica, and you want your child to follows it too, you should use this book from the birthday of your baby. Read morePublished 2 months ago by German
It is at my side at work (early years education) and at home (mother of 5). As I grow in my understanding of this idea of "respect" I can pick up this book and learn... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
Gerber has some really sound ideas here but she's so dogmatic it's overwhelming.Published 6 months ago by Patricia A. Adler
This is a great first book to RIE parenting. It provides a good foundation and background to how RIE was started and provides data/research based proof. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Jen