Sparks: How Parents Can Ignite the Hidden Strengths of Teenagers

Sparks: How Parents Can Ignite the Hidden Strengths of Teenagers


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In this practical book, Dr. Peter Benson, a leading authority on childhood and adolescence, describes a simple yet powerful plan for awakening the spark that lives inside each and every young person. Sparks—when illuminated and nurtured—give young people joy, energy, and direction. They have the power to change a young person’s life from one of “surviving” to “thriving.” Grounded in new research with thousands of teenagers and parents, Sparks offers a step-by-step approach to helping teenagers discover their unique gifts, and works for all families, no matter their economic status, parenting situation, or ethnic background.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780470294048
Publisher: Wiley
Publication date: 10/06/2008
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 430,295
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Peter L. Benson, Ph.D., is widely recognized as a leading authority on children and teenagers and the processes that help them flourish and thrive. He is the creator of the framework of Developmental Assets and other widely celebrated innovations in human development. He serves as president and CEO of Search Institute, an independent nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide leadership, knowledge, and resources to promote healthy children, youth, and communities.

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Table of Contents


Introduction: How Igniting Our Teenagers’ Sparks.

Can Support and Save Our Children and Their Future.

Part One: Five Steps to Help Ignite Your Teen’s Sparks.

Step One: Recognize the Power of Sparks.

Step Two: Know Your Own Teenager.

Step Three: Help Discover and Reveal Your Teen’s Sparks.

Step Four: Be the Captain of Your Teen’s Spark Team.

Step Five: Keep Your Teen’s Spark Lit.

Part Two: What Helps Teens Thrive.

Chapter One: On the Road to a Hopeful Future: Stories from Across America

Chapter Two: Thriving Youth, Thriving Nation.

Spark Resources.

Teenage Sparks: A Rich National Tapestry.

What Kids Need to Succeed: The 40 Developmental Assets (Ages 12 to 18 Years).

Key Spark Resources.



About the Author.


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Sparks: How Parents Can Ignite the Hidden Strengths of Teenagers 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
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Written by: Peter L. Benson, Ph.D.
Published by: Jossey-Bass
Reviewed by: Stephanie Rollins for 2/2009
ISBN: 978-0-470-29404-8
¿How to Give Your Teen a Spark¿Passion¿ 5 stars
One of the things I wish for my children is that they have passion for their career, hobbies, family, and life in general. This book teaches parents, teachers, and youth leaders how to ignite the spark that leads to passion.
What is a spark? It is a potential, a talent that could lead to your teen¿s passion, calling in life. It is what makes your teen unique. What better gift to give your teen that finding and igniting his spark?
Though parents are the main people to ignite a spark, the author calls on all of us¿neighbors, teachers, church leaders, coaches, and etc¿ to help mentor teens, so they may find their spark.
There are inspiring testimonies from teens who have embraced their spark. Toward the end of the book, is a list of suggestions for igniting sparks. It lists possible talents your teen may have. It lists the external and internal factors needed to turn the spark into a passion. This book not only explains what a spark, it also tells how to nurture it into a flame of passion.
This is well written and easy to read. Parents, youth leaders, and educators will benefit from this book.
Busy__Mom More than 1 year ago
As soon as I read the first few lines of the ParentsDigest summary, I knew I had to have this book! There's a fine line between protecting your children and smothering them, and I wanted to find more balance in my parenting techniques. Dr. Benson's advice has helped me make a step in that direction.