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The Blessing Of A Skinned Knee: Using Jewish Teachings to Raise Self-Reliant Children Hardcover – January 4, 2001
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From Publishers Weekly
Frustrated with a therapeutic practice that "shifted too frequently to be an anchor" for parents struggling with issues like overindulgence and overscheduling, clinical psychologist Mogel turned to her religious heritage for ways to help her clients and her own family "find grace and security" in an increasingly complex world. "In the time-tested lessons of Judaism, I discovered insights and practical tools that spoke directly to these issues," writes Mogel, who left her psychology practice in order "to help parents look at their children's anxieties and desires using a different lens." Digging into the rich traditions of the Torah, the Talmud and other Jewish teachings, Mogel builds a parenting blueprint that draws on core spiritual values relevant to families of all faiths. With warmth and humor, she offers strategies for encouraging respect and gratitude in children, and cautions against overprotection ("we treat our children's lives like we're cruise ship directors who must get them to their destinationDadulthoodDsmoothly, without their feeling even the slightest bump or wave") and the pressure of "Lake Wobegon parenting" (a reference to Garrison Keillor's fictional town where "all the children are above average"). Her thoughtful observations consistently illuminate and reassure. Impassioned, lyrical and eminently practical, this inspiring volume is a real treasure. Agent, Betsy Amster. (Jan.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.
"Dr. Mogel's personal and caring touch comes through clearly as she presents practical and useful suggestions for parents." -- Jacqueline I. Haines, Director of the Gesell Institute for Human Development
"Impassioned, lyrical, and eminently practical, this inspiring volume is a real treasure." -- Publishers Weekly, November 20, 2000
...She hits all the difficult issues: materialism, permissiveness and the protection of sacred time and space. -- Reverend Robert Thompson, Minister of the Phillips Exeter Academy
A treasure trove of information. Dr. Mogel uses a personal, caring touch to present practical, useful ideas.... -- Jacqueline Haines, Director of the Gesell Institute for Human Development
Peter Cobb executive director of the Council for Spiritual and Ethical Education Prophets call on the wisdom of a tradition, its revealed truth, to say out loud what we know but are afraid to utter. Wendy Mogel has issued a prophetic call to good parenting, one laced with psychological insight, practicality, and humor. Her words are themselves a gift of faith and a blessing. -- Review
Wendy Mogel presents us with one of the finest and most challenging books on parenting to emerge in recent years... -- Rabbi Jeffrey Salkin, author of Putting God on the Guest List
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The result is her book, Blessings of a Skinned Knee, and a new career teaching preventative parenting in schools, churches and synagogues rather than treating single families on the proverbial couch.
Much of the Judaica is prosaica, familiar to anyone who has sat through some High Holiday sermons and done a bit of study. Still, these are the touchstones of the tradition, beginning with "Honor thy father and mother" and the injunction, "Teach your child how to swim," and she handles them with an ecumenical, nondogmatic touch. Swimming, we learn from Wendy, means giving kids a bit of independence, even if they end up skinning a knee. The table is the altar of the home, a place to practice respect, express thanks, and clean up together. She writes in favor of more discipline at home, but also more autonomy and less fear out of the house (and on line). And she urges us to honor the sweet ordinariness of our kids as well as their potential for greatness.
The overall message sits well with me, and I am already trying to put some of her ideas into action. I've got to start with swimming lessons for my six-year-old!
Previously i feared having kids thinking that today's world is so different than when i was growing up. How could kids have so many issues and parenting be so difficult? what did my parents do that it seems others these days do not (my mom confirms that i was a "Good" kid - maybe just so i have grand kids for her) and as i read this i find that most of the suggestions are how i was raised, yet realize that this is NOT the norm these days. Thus clearly having such a nice instruction book at hand to remind parents that they are not in place to buy the world for their kids but rather to guide their children into becoming contributing members of an adult society will help you teach your children the manners, and work ethic, and self-reliance needed for a bright and happy future. You will learn how you can do more for your kids by being stable parents who do not burden themselves with the worries of every whim the child has.
This book seems to be a great guide to help parents feel more secure in their parenting skills as well as guide them on how to parent responsibly (not feeling guilty for not buying every new toy/etc) so your children can bennifit from a stable environment with rules and guidance that will help them be the best humnan they can be!
An easy read full of easily implemented ideas.
I highly recommend this book.