Raising Nuestros Ninos: Bringing Up Latino Children in a Bicultural World

Overview

All parents want their children to thrive and succeed, but Latino parents face a unique set of challenges — passing along our much-cherished cultural traditions and values, while sending our sons and daughters into an increasingly fast-paced and often homogeneous world, where it's easy to lose sight of nuestra familia and the legacy of past generations. Now, an award-winning Latina in the field of early childhood education (and a mother herself) has assembled an indispensable reference for Hispanic parents and ...

See more details below
Paperback (Original)
$22.76
BN.com price
(Save 8%)$24.99 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (60) from $1.99   
  • New (16) from $2.25   
  • Used (44) from $1.99   
Sending request ...

Overview

All parents want their children to thrive and succeed, but Latino parents face a unique set of challenges — passing along our much-cherished cultural traditions and values, while sending our sons and daughters into an increasingly fast-paced and often homogeneous world, where it's easy to lose sight of nuestra familia and the legacy of past generations. Now, an award-winning Latina in the field of early childhood education (and a mother herself) has assembled an indispensable reference for Hispanic parents and caregivers of children from birth to age twelve. A practical reference as well as a precious treasury of la cultura, Raising Nuestros Niños covers:

• Our History, Traditions, and Culture: Lessons to share with your children, and simple ways to enrich your child's development and self-esteem as you celebrate your heritage

• Your Child's Social, Emotional, and Intellectual Skills: How to encourage these vital areas of a youngster's development, and why an environment rich in Latino culture will enhance your child's future

• The Value of Family and Community: The cornerstones of effective parenting that have supported and nurtured generations of Latino households
Filled with the latest research as well as personal anecdotes, songs, recipes, dichos, and games, Raising Nuestros Niños will provide a rich cultural framework designed to help you parent effectively and responsibly, as you pass along the priceless gift of nuestra cultura.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Former Surgeon General Dr. Antonia Novello A wonderful resource guide for Latino parents.

Cristina Saralegui host of Univision's Cristina show Children should come into this world with Gloria Rodriguez's book under their arms as an instruction manual for their parents. Superb!

T. Berry Brazelton, M.D. bestselling author of Touchpoints: Your Child's Emotional and Behavioral Development A very timely book to back up the Latino culture.

Library Journal
In an effort to help Latino parents prepare their children for success in the world while preserving their familial and cultural heritage, Rodriguez has written this extensive child-care manual. Drawing on her professional training and her experience with Avance, a nonprofit family support and education program, she weaves practical information on child development together with Spanish songs, rhymes, recipes, and celebrations. While her advice on helping children develop emotionally and intellectually is valid for all cultures, the emphasis is on the special joys and challenges of maintaining la familia in today's world. The book is geared toward Latino parents of children from infancy to age 12 but also serves as an excellent resource for professionals in education and social science or for young people thinking of becoming parents. Recommended for public and academic libraries.--Deborah Bigelow, Leonia P.L., NJ
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780684839691
  • Publisher: Touchstone
  • Publication date: 5/28/1999
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 1,472,450
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.98 (d)

Meet the Author

Gloria G. Rodriguez, Ph.D., is the founder, president, and CEO of Avance, a nonprofit family support and education program that provides services and training to Hispanic parents across the country and in Latin America. Both Avance, which has won numerous awards, and Rodriguez have been featured in The New York Times, Parents magazine, and Latina. Gloria Rodriguez lives in San Antonio, Texas, where Avance is based.

Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

Introduction

In 1970, as a freshman in college studying sociology and education, I learned that I was a "child-at-risk." As the daughter of a single mother, who raised me and seven other children in the barrios of San Antonio, I was, according to some experts, not supposed to have made it to my high school graduation. At a time when statistics had begun to paint a grim portrait of Hispanic youth in crisis, with alarming rates of school drop-out, low academic achievement, and juvenile delinquency, I marveled at the fact that by society's standards, I was a mystery.

When I read those foreboding numbers, I began thinking back to the Alazán Housing Project and our tiny wood-frame house on Colima Street in the city's West Side, where my mother, a widow with no more than a third-grade education, successfully raised her children in spite of the drugs, violence, and crime that threatened the streets. I asked myself, just what was it that this woman did, what secret or strange magic did she possess to have successfully raised her children despite the odds?

Several years of study, a Ph.D., and three children of my own later, I found out that it was no secret or spell. For my mother, Lucy Salazar, it was a combination of her unwavering faith, her deep sense of commitment to family, and the support she received from the extended family and neighbors in el barrio that made her unique. The greatest support came from my grandfather, Lázaro "Papayo" Villegas, who became for me, at the age of two, a loving father figure after my father died. Central in my family were an unconditional love, dedication, and high expectations for the children. There was also a profound sense of commitment to la cultura, which they so proudly bestowed on us as a special gift that needed to be preserved and cherished.

In spite of the fact that we were poor, I remember always coming home to a loving mother who prepared a table of food, complete with a plate of warm tortillas piled high. Although we had a small yard where we lived, my mother always managed to fill it with fragrant perennial flowers and beautiful rose bushes, which, along with the pecan trees, made the yard beautiful and made it seem bigger than it was. Though my mother taught us the importance of humility, she also emphasized el orgullo, or pride, stressing that we should always hold our heads high. She had my sisters and me dolled up in gloves and pretty hats to show off the brightly colored petticoat dresses she sewed for la Navidad and Día de Pascuas. Each one of us was made to feel important and special. An intense sense of obligation to la familia took shape during those early years, for as sisters and brothers we were expected to look out for one another. As children, we were expected to show respeto to our elders. As Latinos, we were infused with a sense of pride and dignidad because we were part of nuestra gente, our people.

My mother's favorite dicho, or saying, no hay mal que por bien no venga, out of everything bad comes something good, became a familiar creed in our house. Though she relied on my grandfather for support, my mother served as both father and mother to me. She was, like my mother-in-law, la Doña, always making clear in no uncertain terms what she expected from her children and never deviating from the rules she set. Like many Hispanic parents, among those things she considered most important was nuestra educación, a learning that included not just what we read in books, but how we behaved, our attitudes, our principles, and beliefs. To be bien educados, to be well educated, meant not only that we knew how to read and write, but that we possessed the virtues of respect, loyalty, compassion, and hard work, and the ability to distinguish right from wrong.

One of the most vivid memories of my childhood takes me back to when I was not more than four years old. I was standing on the sidewalk in front of my building in a housing project when an older child plowed into me on her bicycle, sending me flat on my face as she pedaled away, indifferent to my injuries. My mother, who saw the incident from the second-story window of our building, was so enraged and upset that she called the police, and the incident, much to the surprise of my neighbors, was even reported later in the local newspaper. What stayed with me long after that day was the way my mother, always vigilant, courageous, and headstrong, never failed to use every one of her resources and energies to keep her children standing. Mientras que hubiera aliento en su cuerpo (as long as there was breath in her body), she was determined to make sure that no one was going to knock us down and keep us from becoming who God intended us to become.

This woman who had so little, managed to fill us with so much love, hope, and pride that we could never imagine not meeting her expectations to stay out of trouble and pursue our goals. Both she and my grandfather made sure we knew that we were special. I remember my grandfather telling us, "Dios cuida a los huérfanos y las viudas," God takes care of orphans and widows. "He has a special purpose for each of you."

My purpose in life these past twenty-five years, besides my family, has been Avance, a nonprofit organization that has been recognized worldwide as a leading parent-education and family-support organization and wins praise from both the mainstream and Hispanic media as well as politicians on every side of the political spectrum. Dignitaries including Prince Charles, Barbara Bush, Jesse Jackson, Governor Ann Richards, Surgeon General David Satcher, and U.S. Senator Bill Bradley have visited the Avance programs. Avance has been recognized in books written by three First Ladies: Barbara Bush's First Teachers, Hillary Rodham Clinton's It Takes a Village, and Rosalynn Carter's Helping Someone with Mental Illness. In 1997, an Avance family and I were invited to the White House by President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton to represent Avance as a model program at the White House Conference on Early Childhood Development and Learning. Avance was able to expand its parent education and family support services because of the support of the largest foundations and corporations in the United States, including Carnegie, Ford, Kellogg, Rockefeller, Hilton, Mott, Hasbro, and Kraft/General Foods.

This book brings the strategies and principles, which have helped so many Avance parents from the neighborhood where I grew up and beyond, to all Hispanic parents. The model that Avance has cultivated over twenty-five years of research and experience is based on meeting children's four basic needs: the physical, cognitive, social, and emotional. In addition to these, for the purposes of this book, I have added a fifth need that is interwoven throughout the Hispanic cultural fabric: our faith and spirituality. Using activities that embrace and celebrate the traditions of nuestra raza, our people, I show parents how their culture can enhance the experience of child rearing. I build on our strengths as Latinos, namely our language and cultural values, as I help parents acquire knowledge and skills essential to becoming better parents. These values include devotion to children, marriage, family, faith, and community. Nuestras costumbres, our customs, are powerful forces that can shape children's minds and hearts, creating proud and confident individuals who have something very special to offer society.

All of us want to see our children become healthy, happy, competent, and successful human beings. We want them to excel in school and grow up to be honest, compassionate, hard working, and responsible individuals. Of course, children do not automatically come with these virtues, nor do they come with instructions. Likewise, effective parenting does not come naturally; it is an art and includes skills that must be learned, like any other important role in society. You already possess many of the essential ingredients for effective parenting, including the love, hopes, and dreams you have for your children. With the right tools, parenting can be the most fulfilling and gratifying experience of your life.

Hispanic Americans, about to become the largest ethnic group in the United States, face great opportunities and challenges. As mothers and fathers, many find themselves struggling to navigate their children through an increasingly urban, mobile, and impersonal competitive society, where negative influences seem to lurk around every corner. The natural support systems associated with la familia, a strong marriage and a network of uncles, aunts, friends, and neighbors, is still strong among many Hispanics, but must be reinforced as families become more mobile and Americanized. My husband and I are like many working Hispanic parents who want to maintain old traditions in this ever-changing world while coping with the demands of two careers. I know the obstacles that many of you face. Nevertheless, I also know that there are ways to merge the best of both worlds, the Latino culture and the American culture, to help maintain a strong marriage and family and to help your children succeed in a bilingual, bicultural world.

With my training in the fields of education and child growth and development, I can provide you with the most up-to-date information and research to help you guide your children. Certainly, children around the world have the same basic needs. However, as a Latina who is raising three children and who has worked with countless other Hispanic parents, I want to discuss these principles with a voice that speaks to our community. In doing so, I will draw upon my experiences from my own upbringing, my professional training and development, my teaching experience, and examples from the Avance and the Rodriguez family. I will also apply the knowledge I have gained from my own sons and daughter, Salvador, Steven, and Vanessa, as they learned about their world and their rich Hispanic heritage and as they developed their enormous potential. My children have served as my laboratory while I have tried to apply the theories that I learned in child growth and development to each of them through every developmental stage. Parenting can certainly be a challenge as our children test the limits and strive for autonomy and independence. At times humorous, often harrowing, the anecdotes I will share are, above all, full of heart, for they let you know that you are not alone in your frustrations and fears, nor in your hopes and dreams for your niños.

Through anecdotes, dichos, songs, and games, this book will offer you a rich cultural framework for absorbing the information you need for parenting. These elements may teach, entertain, humor, and perhaps even surprise you. But mostly, they will remind you how unique and important your culture is and how it can enrich your family and community and help you fulfill your parental roles and responsibilities. At a time when families and communities everywhere are looking for new buffers against the forces that pull them apart, you will find that the consejos, or words of advice, in this book still hold a message that speaks to all people in the twenty-first century. The sanctity of the extended family, the belief in community and our unique sense of compadrazgo, godparenthood, reflect our devotion to relationships. For generations, these ties have held Hispanic families together. Like the countless elders who counseled my mother and whose words of wisdom were passed on to me and to my own children, this book will offer some consejos on how to bring about un niño bien educado, a well-educated, well-rounded child.

This book covers the first twelve years of a child's life. With the last of my three children, Vanessa, having just turned thirteen when I began writing this book, I marvel at all that she and my two sons, Sal and Steven, learned during the first twelve years of life. Important milestones take shape during this critical period, from children's ability to learn basic concepts, languages, and values, to developing their self-esteem and personality. These are the important years when they establish their character and when their interests and talents emerge. Half of what children learn between the time they are in the womb and the age of seventeen is learned by the age of four. The critical message of this book, therefore, is that there will never be another person who will have a greater influence in the development of your children than you. If you lay a good foundation and establish a strong parent-child relationship during these important years of life, then the likelihood of your children doing well in school and life will be even greater.

This book is for individuals who are parents or who are planning to become parents. I want to help you understand what is expected and needed during these years so that you will create the right kind of environment for your children. Being an effective parent requires a great amount of time, energy, patience, and commitment, knowledge, and skills. I hope this book will help you acquire the information and skills to help you improve the way you interact with your niños. Just as was true for my mother, a combination of your faith, your deep sense of commitment to your culture and your children, as well as the support that you will receive from your spouse, family, neighbors, friends, and community will help you in your parenting role and in enabling your children to reach their potential.

As you read this book, I want it to appeal to your mind as a rational adult who wants to provide the best upbringing for your children. But I also want it to touch your soul as a Latino or Latina who recognizes and is proud of your cultural roots. It is clear that we have much to be proud of. I want Hispanic parents or those individuals married to Hispanics to be able to help their children find a place in the world where they can shine. As nuestros niños learn about their rich cultural Latino heritage, history, and language, while absorbing the American culture and English language, they will be ready to assume their leadership roles in this country and in the world.

Over the years, I have received numerous awards and recognition for my work in parent education, from Hispanic magazines, including Hispanic, Hispanic Business, and Latina, and from the mainstream media, including the New York Times, ABC's World News Tonight, Lifetime Television, Parent's magazine, and Working Mother magazine. While I may be considered by some to be an expert in the fields of parenting and early childhood education, I do not profess to be the perfect mother, nor my children model children. I doubt if there are such individuals. I certainly have made some mistakes in child rearing and, in retrospect, could have done some things differently. However, I do know from experience that effective parenting, with some training, guidance, and support, can be achieved to a great measure. As with everything in life, you, too, will deviate from the mark, but with a strong foundation, you will find you can survive the pitfalls and find the experience as joyful and fulfilling as I have.

You may remember being told the following words by a parent or grandparent: Hijo eres, padre serás, según lo hiciste, así lo verás. Loosely translated, the refrain says, Child you are, parent you will be, just as you have done, it will be done to you. As a strong-willed child, my mother used to tell me, "Vas a pagar todas las que debes," You will pay back all that you owe. This was a warning that I remembered with a sense of excitement mixed with fear upon the birth of each of my children. I asked myself, was I prepared in the same way that my mother was to meet the enormous challenges of raising these tiny human beings who would surely grow up to be strong-willed individuals like their mother? How could I take the lessons of her experience and apply them to my own reality?

These are the kinds of questions that you, too, may be asking yourself as you begin the greatest journey of your life preparing the next generation of leaders, citizens, workers, and parents. I hope that the pages that follow will give you some answers as you proceed paso pot paso, step by glorious step.

Copyright © 1999 by Gloria G. Rodriguez, Ph.D.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Contents
Foreword
Acknowledgment
Introduction
Part One
Destined for Greatness: Teaching Hispanic Children Who They Are, Where They Came From, and Where They Are Going
I Destined for Greatness: Hispanic Demographics and History
¿Quiénes Somos?
II The Hispanic Culture
La Cultura Hispana
III Hispanic Role Models
Ruestras Estrellas Brillantes
Part Two
Basic Developmental Needs of Children
IV Our Children Are Unique and Special
Como los Dedos de la Mano
Helping Your Children Develop Intellectually
Cada Cabeza Es un Mundo
Social and Emotional needs of Children
El niño Bien Educado/Amor a Manos Llenas

Part Three
The Three Pillars of Effective Parenting: Marriage, Family, and Community
VII El Matrimonio: Marriage
Contrato, Compromiso, y Comunicación
VIII La Familia: Family
Con Familia Hay Amor y Sabiduría
IX La Comunidad: Community
El Muchacho Malcriado Dondequiera Encuentra Padre
Resource List for Parents
Index

Read More Show Less

Introduction

Introduction

In 1970, as a freshman in college studying sociology and education, I learned that I was a "child-at-risk." As the daughter of a single mother, who raised me and seven other children in the barrios of San Antonio, I was, according to some experts, not supposed to have made it to my high school graduation. At a time when statistics had begun to paint a grim portrait of Hispanic youth in crisis, with alarming rates of school drop-out, low academic achievement, and juvenile delinquency, I marveled at the fact that by society's standards, I was a mystery.

When I read those foreboding numbers, I began thinking back to the Alazán Housing Project and our tiny wood-frame house on Colima Street in the city's West Side, where my mother, a widow with no more than a third-grade education, successfully raised her children in spite of the drugs, violence, and crime that threatened the streets. I asked myself, just what was it that this woman did, what secret or strange magic did she possess to have successfully raised her children despite the odds?

Several years of study, a Ph.D., and three children of my own later, I found out that it was no secret or spell. For my mother, Lucy Salazar, it was a combination of her unwavering faith, her deep sense of commitment to family, and the support she received from the extended family and neighbors in el barrio that made her unique. The greatest support came from my grandfather, Lázaro "Papayo" Villegas, who became for me, at the age of two, a loving father figure after my father died. Central in my family were an unconditional love, dedication, and high expectations for the children. There was also a pro the rules she set. Like many Hispanic parents, among those things she considered most important was nuestra educación, a learning that included not just what we read in books, but how we behaved, our attitudes, our principles, and beliefs. To be bien educados, to be well educated, meant not only that we knew how to read and write, but that we possessed the virtues of respect, loyalty, compassion, and hard work, and the ability to distinguish right from wrong.

One of the most vivid memories of my childhood takes me back to when I was not more than four years old. I was standing on the sidewalk in front of my building in a housing project when an older child plowed into me on her bicycle, sending me flat on my face as she pedaled away, indifferent to my injuries. My mother, who saw the incident from the second-story window of our building, was so enraged and upset that she called the police, and the incident, much to the surprise of my neighbors, was even reported later in the local newspaper. What stayed with me long after that day was the way my mother, always vigilant, courageous, and headstrong, never failed to use every one of her resources and energies to keep her children standing. Mientras que hubiera aliento en su cuerpo as long as there was breath in her body, she was determined to make sure that no one was going to knock us down and keep us from becoming who God intended us to become.

This woman who had so little, managed to fill us with so much love, hope, and pride that we could never imagine not meeting her expectations to stay out of trouble and pursue our goals. Both she and my grandfather made sure we knew that we were special. I remember my grandfathe r telling us, "Dios cuida a los huérfanos y las viudas," God takes care of orphans and widows. "He has a special purpose for each of you."

My purpose in life these past twenty-five years, besides my family, has been Avance, a nonprofit organization that has been recognized worldwide as a leading parent-education and family-support organization and wins praise from both the mainstream and Hispanic media as well as politicians on every side of the political spectrum. Dignitaries including Prince Charles, Barbara Bush, Jesse Jackson, Governor Ann Richards, Surgeon General David Satcher, and U.S. Senator Bill Bradley have visited the Avance programs. Avance has been recognized in books written by three First Ladies: Barbara Bush's First Teachers, Hillary Rodham Clinton's It Takes a Village, and Rosalynn Carter's Helping Someone with Mental Illness. In 1997, an Avance family and I were invited to the White House by President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton to represent Avance as a model program at the White House Conference on Early Childhood Development and Learning. Avance was able to expand its parent education and family support services because of the support of the largest foundations and corporations in the United States, including Carnegie, Ford, Kellogg, Rockefeller, Hilton, Mott, Hasbro, and Kraft/General Foods.

This book brings the strategies and principles, which have helped so many Avance parents from the neighborhood where I grew up and beyond, to all Hispanic parents. The model that Avance has cultivated over twenty-five years of research and experience is based on meeting children's four basic needs: the physical, cognitive, social, and emotional. In addition to these, for the purposes of this book, I have added a fifth need that is interwoven throughout the Hispanic cultural fabric: our faith and spirituality. Using activities that embrace and celebrate the traditions of nuestra raza, our people, I show parents how their culture can enhance the experience of child rearing. I build on our strengths as Latinos, namely our language and cultural values, as I help parents acquire knowledge and skills essential to becoming better parents. These values include devotion to children, marriage, family, faith, and community. Nuestras costumbres, our customs, are powerful forces that can shape children's minds and hearts, creating proud and confident individuals who have something very special to offer society.

All of us want to see our children become healthy, happy, competent, and successful human beings. We want them to excel in school and grow up to be honest, compassionate, hard working, and responsible individuals. Of course, children do not automatically come with these virtues, nor do they come with instructions. Likewise, effective parenting does not come naturally; it is an art and includes skills that must be learned, like any other important role in society. You already possess many of the essential ingredients for effective parenting, including the love, hopes, and dreams you have for your children. With the right tools, parenting can be the most fulfilling and gratifying experience of your life.

Hispanic Americans, about to become the largest ethnic group in the United States, face great opportunities and challenges. As mothers and fathers, many find themselves struggling to navigate their children through an increasingly urban, mobile, and impersonal competitive society, where negative influences seem to lurk around every corner. The natural support systems associated with la familia, a strong marriage and a network of uncles, aunts, friends, and neighbors, is still strong among many Hispanics, but must be reinforced as families become more mobile and Americanized. My husband and I are like many working Hispanic parents who want to maintain old traditions in this ever-changing world while coping with the demands of two careers. I know the obstacles that many of you face. Nevertheless, I also know that there are ways to merge the best of both worlds, the Latino culture and the American culture, to help maintain a strong marriage and family and to help your children succeed in a bilingual, bicultural world.

With my training in the fields of education and child growth and development, I can provide you with the most up-to-date information and research to help you guide your children. Certainly, children around the world have the same basic needs. However, as a Latina who is raising three children and who has worked with countless other Hispanic parents, I want to discuss these principles with a voice that speaks to our community. In doing so, I will draw upon my experiences from my own upbringing, my professional training and development, my teaching experience, and examples from the Avance and the Rodriguez family. I will also apply the knowledge I have gained from my own sons and daughter, Salvador, Steven, and Vanessa, as they learned about their world and their rich Hispanic heritage and as they developed their enormous potential. My children have served as my laboratory while I have tried to apply the theories that I learned in child growth and development to each of them through every developmental stage. Parenting can certainly be a challenge as our children test the limits and strive for autonomy and independence. At times humorous, often harrowing, the anecdotes I will share are, above all, full of heart, for they let you know that you are not alone in your frustrations and fears, nor in your hopes and dreams for your niños.

Through anecdotes, dichos, songs, and games, this book will offer you a rich cultural framework for absorbing the information you need for parenting. These elements may teach, entertain, humor, and perhaps even surprise you. But mostly, they will remind you how unique and important your culture is and how it can enrich your family and community and help you fulfill your parental roles and responsibilities. At a time when families and communities everywhere are looking for new buffers against the forces that pull them apart, you will find that the consejos, or words of advice, in this book still hold a message that speaks to all people in the twenty-first century. The sanctity of the extended family, the belief in community and our unique sense of compadrazgo, godparenthood, reflect our devotion to relationships. For generations, these ties have held Hispanic families together. Like the countless elders who counseled my mother and whose words of wisdom were passed on to me and to my own children, this book will offer some consejos on how to bring about un niño bien educado, a well-educated, well-rounded child.

This book covers the first twelve years of a child's life. With the last of my three children, V anessa, having just turned thirteen when I began writing this book, I marvel at all that she and my two sons, Sal and Steven, learned during the first twelve years of life. Important milestones take shape during this critical period, from children's ability to learn basic concepts, languages, and values, to developing their self-esteem and personality. These are the important years when they establish their character and when their interests and talents emerge. Half of what children learn between the time they are in the womb and the age of seventeen is learned by the age of four. The critical message of this book, therefore, is that there will never be another person who will have a greater influence in the development of your children than you. If you lay a good foundation and establish a strong parent-child relationship during these important years of life, then the likelihood of your children doing well in school and life will be even greater.

This book is for individuals who are parents or who are planning to become parents. I want to help you understand what is expected and needed during these years so that you will create the right kind of environment for your children. Being an effective parent requires a great amount of time, energy, patience, and commitment, knowledge, and skills. I hope this book will help you acquire the information and skills to help you improve the way you interact with your niños. Just as was true for my mother, a combination of your faith, your deep sense of commitment to your culture and your children, as well as the support that you will receive from your spouse, family, neighbors, friends, and community will help you in your parenting role and in ena bling your children to reach their potential.

As you read this book, I want it to appeal to your mind as a rational adult who wants to provide the best upbringing for your children. But I also want it to touch your soul as a Latino or Latina who recognizes and is proud of your cultural roots. It is clear that we have much to be proud of. I want Hispanic parents or those individuals married to Hispanics to be able to help their children find a place in the world where they can shine. As nuestros niños learn about their rich cultural Latino heritage, history, and language, while absorbing the American culture and English language, they will be ready to assume their leadership roles in this country and in the world.

Over the years, I have received numerous awards and recognition for my work in parent education, from Hispanic magazines, including Hispanic, Hispanic Business, and Latina, and from the mainstream media, including the New York Times, ABC's World News Tonight, Lifetime Television, Parent's magazine, and Working Mother magazine. While I may be considered by some to be an expert in the fields of parenting and early childhood education, I do not profess to be the perfect mother, nor my children model children. I doubt if there are such individuals. I certainly have made some mistakes in child rearing and, in retrospect, could have done some things differently. However, I do know from experience that effective parenting, with some training, guidance, and support, can be achieved to a great measure. As with everything in life, you, too, will deviate from the mark, but with a strong foundation, you will find you can survive the pitfalls and find the experience as joyful and fulfilling as I have.

You may remember being told the following words by a parent or grandparent: Hijo eres, padre serás, según lo hiciste, así lo verás. Loosely translated, the refrain says, Child you are, parent you will be, just as you have done, it will be done to you. As a strong-willed child, my mother used to tell me, "Vas a pagar todas las que debes," You will pay back all that you owe. This was a warning that I remembered with a sense of excitement mixed with fear upon the birth of each of my children. I asked myself, was I prepared in the same way that my mother was to meet the enormous challenges of raising these tiny human beings who would surely grow up to be strong-willed individuals like their mother? How could I take the lessons of her experience and apply them to my own reality?

These are the kinds of questions that you, too, may be asking yourself as you begin the greatest journey of your life preparing the next generation of leaders, citizens, workers, and parents. I hope that the pages that follow will give you some answers as you proceed paso pot paso, step by glorious step.

Copyright © 1999 by Gloria G. Rodriguez, Ph.D.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)