Saturday, January 14, 2012

Smart Parenting for Smart Kids

Smart kids have it "made in the shade", right?  Not so much!  Luckily for the parents of those smart kids, Dr. Eileen Kennedy-Moore and Dr. Mark Lowenthal combined their talents and wrote "Smart Parenting for Smart Kids".  Bright kids face obstacles that we don't often consider, but these two therapists know all too well the types of difficulties that await intellectually advanced children.

The good doctors focus on seven fundamental challenges that face smart kids.  Included in that list are: Dealing with perfectionism, relationships, managing sensitivity (and if you parent or teach a bright kid, you know just what this is all about), cooperation and competition, dealing with authority, developing motivation, and finally, finding joy.

Kennedy-Moore and Lowenthal point out the areas that might represent hurdles for smart kids, and they help parents identify effective ways to respond and support children for better outcomes.  They recognize the pressures that come along with higher levels of intelligence, and they help keep it all in perspective, by shining on a light on the issues which parents might not often consider.

Very important things to remember in this quick video!

The book is loaded with vignettes and creative ideas and activities that you can use with your kids, to help them learn better coping skills. Kennedy-Moore and Lowenthal empower parents to teach their kids some crucial psychological and emotional tools, in a fun and non-threatening manner.  It is a rare gem, whose pages will delight you with innovative approaches to the problems that often get smart kids "stuck". 

Never preachy or "academic", "Smart Parenting for Smart Kids" gets to the heart of the matter.  It's about raising healthy, stable children who develop the emotional literacy necessary to truly succeed in life.  The book is grounded on the tenets of social-emotional skill-building, which is a must for every child, but which can be more challenging for particularly bright children.  The book aims to help you raise kids with compassion, perspective, and grit.  Just hearing those words alone makes my heart smile.

Drs. Kennedy-Moore and Lowenthal suggest strategies that will help your children gain the ability to problem-solve, handle conflict, deal with disappointment and more.  They also provide a section in each chapter entitled, Show the Way, in which they spell out how your own behaviors and reactions impact your child.

So very, very true!  Allowing our kids to do their own work.  

This book is a must read for every parent who is raising a child who is gifted or advanced.  It is geared specifically towards some of the stumbling-blocks faced by these kids.  However, the book is so well-written and full of ideas that apply to all children.  The techniques and activities, as well as parental mind-sets discussed, would work wonders with any child (and parent).

To read this book is to love it!  If a book can be called "exquisite", this is it!  You can read the whole first chapter here.

One word of caution, though.  If you use a pencil to underline the most pertinent parts of the books you read (like I do), be sure to have a pencil sharpener handy.  You will need it.  I found myself nodding my head in agreement as I underlined my way thorough the "Smart Parenting for Smart Kids"!

Welcome to the Kidlutions family of award-winners, Dr. Kennedy-Moore and Dr. Lowenthal.  "Smart Parenting for Smart Kids" is a book I will recommend to parents, educators and colleagues time and again.  It's just that powerful!

(If Dr. Eileen Kennedy-Moore's name sounds familiar, it is because she also has another award-winning book, "What About Me? 12 Ways to Get Your Parents' Attention Without Hitting Your Sister")


  1. Wendy,
    Looks like an awesome book! I took a course with Eileen 2 summers ago...she is a wonderful person and so very talented when it comes to working with parents and children. I'm glad to see she is onboard with Kidlutions!

  2. Vivian,

    Thanks for stopping by! Eileen seems like an absolutely wonderful person and resource for families! I'm glad she found us, too! The book IS awesome, as is YOURS!

    Wendy =)

  3. I must get it, read it and recommend to the parents who contact me who want to understand and parent their children better. Thank you for sharing the review.


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