- Paperback: 480 pages
- Publisher: Kiddy World Promotions B.V. (March 1, 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9079208043
- ISBN-13: 978-9079208043
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 500 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #483,336 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Wonder Weeks: How to Stimulate Your Baby's Mental Development and Help Him Turn His 10 Predictable, Great, Fussy Phases Into Magical Leaps Forward Paperback – March 1, 2012
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About the Author
Born in 1944, Hetty van de Rijt studied Educational Psychology at the University of Nijmegen, the Netherlands and she worked in an institute for the mentally handicapped. She obtained her Ph.D. in Physical Anthropology at the University of Cambridge, England in 1982. Born in 1946, her husband Frans X. Plooij studied behavioural biology in the Netherlands in Amsterdam, Nijmegen, and Groningen, where he received his Ph.D. in 1980. Together they studied infant development in free-living chimpanzees with Dr. Jane Goodall in the Gombe National Park, Tanzania, East Africa from 1971-1973. Consequently, from 1973 to 1976, they studied with Prof. Robert Hinde in the Medical Research Council unit on the Development and Integration of Behaviour, University of Cambridge, England. In 1976 their daughter Xaviera was born. From 1976-80 Frans worked at the department of Developmental Psychology, University of Nijmegen, the Netherlands, filming and observing babies in their home environment. From 1981 to 1993 he was head of the department of Research and Development at the institute for Child Studies of the City of Amsterdam, the Netherlands, where, among other things, he worked on the implementation of an innovative second- and foreign-language teaching method for preschool children. From 1993 to 1998, he was a professor at the Department of Developmental and Experimental Clinical Psychology, University of Groningen. Currently, Dr. Plooij is director of the International Research-institute on Infant Studies (IRIS) at Arnhem, and president of Kiddy World Promotions B.V., a consulting firm that serves companies producing products related to children, such as toys. He is a full member of several international, scientific societies including the New York Academy of Sciences. In addition to numerous scientific publications, Dr. Plooij has written several bestselling parenting books. As a post-doc at the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands from 1986 to 1990, Dr. van de Rijt studied the development of human babies in their home environment. As lead author with her husband as co-author, she wrote the best-selling parenting book The Wonder Weeks, which has been published in twelve languages, from the USA to Japan. She designed a parental support and education program called "Leaping hurdles," based on the Wonder Weeks and published a scientific evaluation study to report on the effects of this program. She died far too young at the age of 59.
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1. My Diary section has a SUPER detailed checklist of some of the skills that help define your baby's interests and personality during each specific wonder week and how they express their new cognitive development.
For example, i bought the book when my son was approaching the 37th week. At this point he didn't clap his hands or mimic people at all! I got concerned when I went through the checklist and realized it was very polar. Anything physical or involving movement he was way advanced, but this meant he didn't have time to develop other skills. I naturally pushed for more things involving movement and he was a happier baby. Now and again I go back to the skills I didn't check off and eventually a couple months later, they're all checked off.
i.e. : Not checked "Switching Roles"- Asks you to build blocks by handing you his blocks, Asks mother to sing a song , then claps his hands
Checked "Switching Roles" - Feeds crackers/bottle to mother, Can initiate a game by himself
2. Top Games for specific wonder week has very relevant games that I normally wouldn't have thought of to play. For example, for the babies going through separation anxiety, they said to play hide and seek. I am astounded at how long my baby can be by himself calmly trying to look for me and going through every room until he finds me! Now he ventures out further by himself instead of clinging onto my leg in the living room. Honestly, I wouldn't not think to play hide and seek with a 8.5/9month old...but I guess they respond well to it! He even tries to slide closets doors since we've up-ed the bar and now I hide in closets and bathrooms where he has to open a door to get to me. As a new mom my zombie brain was running out of ideas to entertain him, but this section was a great source for new fun ways to stimulate his growing brain.
3. Detailed description of the "magical leap forward." They describe it more in depth with examples. This was the first book that mentioned your baby will have a correlating fear of "being strapped in" during the week of Categories. My baby hated being strapped in his stroller, car seat etc.... This was the first book that warned me about it and made me more empathetic when it happened. My son cried so hard in the car seat he "exorcist-style" threw up everywhere in the backseat from getting worked up. After the stormy period he still protests but he now lasts longer in the seat.
4. What you can do to help section. This section goes in depth of what you can do to help stimulate your child during each week.
For example, they said to give an active baby room to investigate and explore, especially if the baby is already physically active and advanced. As the book suggested, I made obstacle courses for my baby and he loves it! He goes under and over couch sectionals/parts and crude forts. I introduced him to a gymboree room with a 5 foot high plastic indoor slide. Without any help or provoking on my end, he shocked me and everyone in the room when he climbed up the slide, turned around, and slid down superman style...and did it again 5x. He was 9.5 months at the time.
Overall, if you really don't want to pay the money, then you can spend hours trying to look for the info elsewhere. But it's all in one convenient book and organized well and easy to navigate. Someone mentioned that there were fillers in the book such as quotes from other parents, but I liked how I can relate to other moms and dads who have the exact problem. The book also deals with how a "high-need" baby would act during the wonder weeks. Even though they don't blatantly use that term or attachment parenting, they do mention how a "very difficult" baby would act, which also helped me cope with my high-need baby.
All in all, I would recommend this book because the few specific things that I have learned from it were invaluable and there is no price to making the life of 1st -time parents easier, especially when trying to understand their "fussy" and "very difficult" baby.
There's also some bizarrely snarky undertones, assuming some really not great things about the readers parenting instincts/emotions toward baby and the "motivations" of infants. All of which are not in my opinion conducive to happy baby parent relations. I haven't found the book I'm looking for but I'll update with a recommendation when I do.
The only reason I couldn't give this book 5 stars, is because I was turned off by some of the language in the book. The author refers to infants as "little screamers" and such. I get that babies scream and cry, but they're tiny humans who are trying to communicate their needs, and it was off-putting to read that they're being referred to in a disrespectful, almost derogatory manner.