The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed

The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed

by Jessica Lahey


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062299253
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 08/23/2016
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 44,998
Product dimensions: 5.31(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.68(d)

About the Author

Jessica Lahey is an educator, speaker, and writer. She has been an English, Latin, and writing teacher in middle and high school for over a decade, writes the biweekly Parent-Teacher Conference advice column for the New York Times, is a contributing writer at the Atlantic, and appears as a commentator on Vermont Public Radio. Jessica earned a JD from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a concentration in juvenile and education law. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and two sons.

Table of Contents

Introduction: How I Learned to Let Go xi

Part I Failure: A Most Valuable Parenting Tool

1 How Failure Became a Dirty Word: A Brief History of American Parenting 3

2 Why Parenting for Dependence Doesn't Work: The Power of Intrinsic Motivation 19

3 Less Really Is More: Parenting for Autonomy and Competence 43

4 Encouragement from the Sidelines: The Real Connection Between Praise and Self-Esteem 61

Part II Learning from Failure: Teaching Kids to Turn Mistakes into Success

5 Household Duties: Laundry as an Opportunity for Competence 75

6 Friends: Accomplices to Failure and the Formation of Identity 95

7 Spores: Losing as an Essential Childhood Experience 119

8 Middle School: Prime Time for Failure 135

9 High School and Beyond: Toward Real Independence 157

Part III Succeeding at School: Learning from Failure is a Team Effort

10 Parent-Teacher Partnerships: How Our Fear of Failure Undermines Education 181

11 Homework: How to Help Without Taking Over 205

12 Grades: The Real Value of a Low Score 223

Conclusion: What I've Learned from Letting Go 241

Acknowledgments 245

Notes 249

Bibliography 253

Index 261

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