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The Wonder Weeks. How to stimulate your baby's mental development and help him turn his 8 predictable, great, fussy phases into magical leaps forward Paperback – March 29, 2010

59 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

New parents faced with an inconsolable baby are often desperate for advice and support. So, at first glance, this detailed look at the developmental causes of fussiness in babies by two Dutch child development experts holds great promise. The book is well organized according to each age's major developmental passage (e.g., "The World of Patterns" at eight weeks, "The World of Categories" at 37 weeks). The problem is that the work has the air of a parenting magazine feature article straining to be a book. While some of the observations and advice presented are original and helpful, they are also frequently repetitious and/or simply inane. Moreover, there is a noticeable absence of references to specific research studies to back up the claims presented. Also lacking is a bibliography. A better choice would be Craig T. and Sharon L. Ramey's Right from Birth. For larger infant development collections only.
Kay Hogan Smith, Univ. of Alabama at Birmingham Lib., Lister Hill
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


"This is a very practical and entertaining window into the baby's first year and a half. Vanderijt and Plooij have observed and found the vulnerable times in an infant's development that I independently came to in my book Touchpoints (Perseus). The authors' observations and practical suggestions are wonderful."--T. Berry Brazelton, M.D., professor emeritus, Harvard Medical School

"Anyone who deals with infants and young children will want to read The Wonder Weeks. This book will open parents' eyes to aspects of their children's growth, development, changing behavior, and emotional responsiveness that they might otherwise not notice or find puzzling and distressing."--Catherine Snow, Ph.D., Shattuck Professor of Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Kiddy World Promotions B.V. (March 29, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9079208019
  • ISBN-13: 978-9079208012
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 0.7 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #319,779 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

31 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Sara Beck on June 7, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I recently purchased The Wonder Weeks to try to help understand why my 4 month old daughter was going through a horrible sleep regression. I found the book to be reassuring--knowing that some things are phases rather than the "new her". As expected, she went back to being more predictable after the new developments. It's helpful to know when the next developmental stage is coming and when it will be over.

Having said that, what to expect is pretty much the same at each of the 8 stages. They do talk about what new skills will be learned and some activities to help develop those skills. But otherwise the chapters are quite repetitive.

I paid $22 for this book. That made this the most expensive baby book I purchased. I'm not sure it was worth that price. I would have purchased it used if available.

If you just want to know when to expect the fussy periods, go to The Wonder Weeks website and download their chart from the extras section. To me, that was the most valuable part of the book.
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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on January 14, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is *exactly* what every new parent wants: a guide that tells exactly why your baby is fine one week and freaking out the next. We all know about the physical growth spurts at 3 and 6 weeks and then 3 and 6 months, but there isn't anything else that tells you when developmental spurts are happening. Until now. As soon as I got this book I went back and looked in my journal from when my son was a baby, and all his fussy weeks matched up with the ones in the book! If I'd had this book at the time it would have been so much easier just to roll with it and not wonder what was "wrong".
IME the best thing about this book is that it doesn't tell you how to be a perfect parent, or give you some focacta plan you have to follow exactly to make your baby turn out the right way. Instead it just tells you why your baby is doing what s/he is doing, so you can have patience and not worry that there's something wrong with either you as a parent or your child.
I just ordered two more to give to new parents I know. This is my one constant shower gift. I can't believe this book hasn't gotten more press than it has, because it would really be a lifesaver for any parent with a baby under the age of 1.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Heather Petit on January 21, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Finally, this book is available in the US. I've been relying on a bare-bones (bullet list) translation from the Dutch version. And relying on it A LOT.
Every parent I know has wondered at some time what happened to their baby, why they are so clingy all of a sudden, why they cry for apparently no reason, why they stopped sleeping well, why they stopped eating well, why suddenly nobody but Mommy will do... who took their nice baby and replaced it with THIS baby? And whose fault is it? "Did I spoil him," they ask, or "Should I punish her?" Will I get better results if I stop responding to all these senseless demands? They look for answers, and get all sorts of advice from others, much of it less than helpful - but they don't know what is going on, so they can't filter the advice effectively.
This book has the answers to all those whys, and the reassurance that you are neither crazy nor at fault.
My patience expanded dramatically when I realized that it wasn't ME, it wasn't my fault, it was just a stage of development for my son. It helped to know that he was actually scared and needed me, and was not pretending or manipulating me. It helped to be able to look forward to the genuinely exciting new knowledge and abilities at the end of the stage. It helped to know that if I supported him, the phase would progress and end. I felt sane, and normal, and knew that other moms went through the same thing. PHEW! :)
I've passed the info on to countless other parents, all of whom have wished that the book was available in the US. I even contacted the publisher of the version in New Zealand, but no luck. Now, this PRICELESS resource is here, and the second I found out, I bought my copy. You won't regret getting your own.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By J. Munger on April 21, 2009
Format: Paperback
At its core, Wonder Weeks has useful information. Unfortunately, the reader has to wade through a lot of pointless and redundant reading to get to it. It could probably be 30-40 pages and convey the stuff you actually want to get from it.

To save readers a lot of time, here's a tip - the first 20ish pages of each chapter can be summed up as "Your baby is entering a growth spurt. He or she will be cranky and clingy. You will be tired and frustrated." That's 50% of the book. Another 25% are testimonials from moms reinforcing those three sentences. The rest is the actual meat - how you can help your baby through this particular spurt, and how the spurt is changing your baby's brain and skill set.

My other complaint is that dads don't exist in this book. We're apparently absent from the parenting process. These days, that has to have been a conscious decision on the author's part, and I just don't get it.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 30, 2004
Format: Paperback
The woman who reviewed this book for the Library Journal has clearly never had an infant who acts fine one week and then crazy the next. If she had, she'd love this book as much as I did, and the 3 friends I've given this book as gifts to did. The reason the authors don't refer to other research studies is that they're the only ones who've specifically been studying this, and they use plenty of examples from their own research. Yes, it's true that it's not written in a really scientific way, but is that what you want to read when you're just trying to figure out why your child stopped sleeping and eating all of a sudden? Not me. I'd rather know what developmental leap is coming up so I know how long the cranky phase will last and what I can do to help my child through it. This book is so easily worth the money and time spent reading it, just because it gives you the patience to be able to wait out difficult periods when you know why they're happening and when they'll stop. No things you should and shouldn't do, just a sort of refernce manual of what's going on and why. Buy the book and your life with your infant through 12-month-old will improve immensely.
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