The Confident Child: Raising Children to Believe in Themselves

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Raising confident, motivated, and caring children is a parent's greatest challenge. Drawing on her own extensive research on children and parents, and on the concept of emotional intelligence which Daniel Goleman brought to public attention in his groundbreaking and best-selling book Emotional Intelligence, Terri Apter has created a strategy based on emotional coaching - learning to respond appropriately to a child's feelings - for parents to promote self-esteem in children. In an accessible style, with ...
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Overview

Raising confident, motivated, and caring children is a parent's greatest challenge. Drawing on her own extensive research on children and parents, and on the concept of emotional intelligence which Daniel Goleman brought to public attention in his groundbreaking and best-selling book Emotional Intelligence, Terri Apter has created a strategy based on emotional coaching - learning to respond appropriately to a child's feelings - for parents to promote self-esteem in children. In an accessible style, with down-to-earth examples of children's lives in the family and in school, Apter shows parents how to raise a child to solve problems, to be socially active and understand others, to express feelings appropriately, and to manage emotions - all of which are crucial skills in developing confidence.

This perceptive and practical book shows parents how to help their children acquire self-esteem building skills and offers a plan for raising confident children. Through "emotional coaching, " Terri Apter shows parents how to raise a child to solve problems, to be socially active and understand others, to express feelings appropriately, and to manage emotions. 224 pp.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
"Self-esteem is now recognized as a key to children's successful development," notes Apter, a Cambridge University social psychologist and author of Altered Lives and Secret Paths, in the first chapter of this convincing, well-written and truly helpful guide. Focusing on children ages five through 15, she details behaviors that indicate low self-esteem in children and suggests means by which parents can deal with their children's (and their own) accompanying anxiety, anger and depression. Her methods are based on a technique called emotional coaching, by which parents enourage kids to identify and accept their feelings and to find acceptable ways to express them. With withering accuracy, Apter describes mistakes every "inevitably imperfect" parent makes and suggests ways parents can correct them. Even moderate displays of anger are damaging, she warns. "When Mommy's mad a mountain grows in my throat," a 6-year-old girl told the researcher. But parents can temper anger's effects by managing it and by compensating for angerthat can't be managed through spending special time with their children and making positive feelings clearwith hugs and smiles. Here is a book that takes the vagueness out of the term self-esteem and suggests concrete ways for parents to help their children like themselves and feel confident about their abilities to deal with the world around them. (Apr.)
Mary Hoffman
“Terri Apter convinces the reader that she is on our side. . . . Her wisdom is tempered by warmth and a rueful acknowledgment that she hasn’t always got it right herself, which is totally disarming.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780553379860
  • Publisher: Bantam Books
  • Publication date: 9/28/1998
  • Edition description: REPRINT
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 8.44 (h) x 0.73 (d)

Meet the Author

Terri Apter is a writer, psychologist, and Fellow of Newnham College, Cambridge University. Her books include The Sister Knot and What Do You Want from Me? She lives in Cambridge, England.

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Table of Contents

1 Confidence for Life 13
2 Assessing a Child's Self-Esteem 25
3 Helping a Child Overcome Low Self-Esteem 42
4 How to Be an Imperfect Parent without Ruining Your Child's Life 71
5 Discipline: The Delicate Balance 102
6 Success and Failure at School 129
7 Sibling Rivalry: How Does It Affect Self-Esteem? 158
8 Gaining Confidence with Friends 178
9 Adolescence: New Touchpoints for Self-Esteem 211
10 Raising Moral Children 242
References 253
Index 259
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 1, 2000

    It was an awsome book.

    This book is a wonderful tool for all parents. It focuses on a difficult part of child rearing that all parents go through. It is very interesting how our society spends a lot of thought, time and money on helping our children grow intellectually and yet our focus on their emotional growth lags behind. As Terri Apter has said 'Self-esteem has a far greater impact than intelligence or innate ability.'(p. 17) Terri Apter has used her own research along with that of other to develop this book. Some of the sources used were research presented by Erik Erikson, Gerald Patterson, Myrna Shure, George Spivack, Carol Gilligan, Daniel Goleman, and Michael Brown. This book is unique in that it is not only backed by research but that it is explained in such a way that people of all educational background can understand and apply. First of all the subtitle is very effective. The word coaching implies a wonderful concept that does not have attached a negative connotation. Some might have used the word teaching or discipline. Secondly, unlike other books on child development this one sets up vignettes, gives potential solutions, plans of attack, and approaches that would be reasonable for the parents to use. Then it takes these situations a step further in that it then explains why the typical responses are harmful and why the given responses are beneficial to the emotional growth of the child. In short, I feel that this book should be a household name for all parents, even those who think they are doing a wonderful job in nurturing their child's self esteem. There is always some area to better, or some situation that will come up that you are not sure how to respond to positively. Apter starts her first three chapters give background information and an overall assessment of children and where their view of selves is, their self-esteem. Apter gives a comprehensive list of potential signs that indicate low self-esteem. Lastly, within these three chapters Apter explains the causes of low self-esteem as anxiety, anger and depression. Then she follows her beneficial pattern of vignette, reasons why the situation plays out as it does, and then appropriate responses parents could have and why. The next six chapters deal with specific areas that are crucial to the emotional development of all children. In these chapters Apter talks about, parents, discipline, school, siblings, friends and adolescence. Again Apter uses her wonderful style and presentation of the details in each area. Lastly, Apter closes with a chapter on how to guide your confident child into making moral decisions. In this chapter Apter gives four 'mind sets' (p.242) that are part of moral behavior. They are, 'care for the welfare of others, responsibility for one's actions, concern for the quality of one's own conduct and understanding of justice.' (p. 242)

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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