Nurture Shock: You’ve gotta read this Book!

Nurture Shock by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman

Publishers: Ebury Press

If you do nothing else for your parenting this year, decade life-time – read this book and make the effort to really ‘get’ what they’re saying.

It doesn’t cover everything, but everything it covers is important.

Chapter Headings (the italics are mine):

1. The Inverse Power of Praise

2. The Lost Hour (of sleep)

3. Why White Parents Don’t Talk About Race

4. Why Kids Lie

5. The Search for Intelligent Life in Kindergarten

6. The Sibling Effect (It’s NOT about parental attention!)

7. The Science of Teen Rebellion

8. Can Self-Control be Taught (Hell yes, but not how many people think!)

9. Plays Well With Others

10. Why Hannah Talks and Alyssia Doesn’t (Or why the kid who was with me all the time spoke in full sentences at 18 months while the two that happily took off to play by themselves took a little longer!)

Awesome. Awesome. AWESOME.

(PS And please come back and tell me what you think!)


About Karyn @ kloppenmum

kloppenmum is me, Karyn Van Der Zwet, mother of three and ex-teacher. I'm part of a revolution in parenting, with the aim to raise mature (not sophisticated) and self-assured children. I also know some stuff about adults. I have also had articles printed in The Journal for The British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (Children and Young People) and the US parenting magazine, Pathways to Family Wellness, as well I regularly write for World Moms Blog (named as one of the Forbes 100 most useful blogs for women 2012 &2013). You can follow me on facebook (kloppenmum) pinterest (Karyn at Kloppenmum) and twitter (@kloppenmum). I'm also vaguely on LinkedIn (Karyn Van Der Zwet). Thanks to Joe (Mr Hare) for taking the photo. Cheers, son: xxxx.
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22 Responses to Nurture Shock: You’ve gotta read this Book!

  1. Li-ling says:

    Your enthusiasm! I’ve just looked it up on Amazon…looks very interesting. Having just finished the notorious Tiger Mummy book, I’m kinda suspecting, I’m not going to be surprised by what this one says. Will be ordering it soon.

    • To be fair I haven’t read Tiger Mum, but from what I have heard this one actually supports some of what Amy Chua says… Look forward to hearing what you think Li-ling. 🙂

  2. Mama B says:

    I love this book! Amazing!! Highly recommend it, one of the best books on parenting I have read.

  3. Crunchymunchy Mama says:

    I actually just started this book for my mothers club book club!

  4. hakea says:

    Got my interest!

    I like “why white parents don’t talk about race”.

    I do. A lot. And am accused of pushing my political agendas onto the kids. I call it creating awareness.

    Just yesterday I filled my book buying quota for the month. Will have to wait until next month, damn it.

    • Certainly think it’s right up your alley (so to speak). The copy I have is on loan, but I’ll definitely buy one and be giving them away if I get a chance!
      Have obviously done an adequate job on the race issue for our kids given the answers they gave to some questions tonight, and we had a great discussion about how people look. I’d call it awareness too. I think we started on that journey when our middle son was surprised his best friend was Maori as his family doesn’t fit the stereotypes. That gave me a fright.

  5. QueenArtLady says:

    Sounds a very interesting book. I just checked the local library catalog and yeh they have it. However it has been checked out today. Maybe another reader of your blog got in first.

  6. cyn says:

    They have this in my local library and I’ve checked the synopsis. It looks very interesting, but I think it’s a bit too early to be reading parenting books. It’d certainly freak out my family and friends if they found me reading it.
    The teen rebellion bit in particular sounds like it might be worth risking their revulsion. I never rebelled as a teenager and I’d like to know why.

    • Hi Cyn, I agree, far too early to be bothered with parenting books, however, this one gives great insights into the cogs and wheels of being human. You could read it under the bed-covers perhaps. I don’t know that the chapter on teenage rebellion would explian your lack thereof. I could share a few theories, but that would be presumptious.

  7. faemom says:

    Amazingly The Husband bought this book last summer. I read it. And it was such a great book. I’ve applied a lot of what the books says as well as dropped some of the pearls of wisdom into other parents’ ears. The Lost Hour was eye-opening and so was The Sibling Effect. I should re-read it to get more out of it.

  8. I’m loving it as well. I happened to have started it just over a week ago (right before I read the comment you left on one of my posts mentioning it 🙂 ).

    Of course, I think it suffers from “selective study reference” like most science-related books about parenting (and every other subject). The neo-classic notion that one can find scientific studies to support *anything* still holds true, but I do keep finding excellent information which also seems to both confirm and surprise my previous notions and observations about kids.

    I was most impressed with the information about sleep deprivation, and its deleterious effects on even the kinds of memories we store. I love the potentially revolutionary ramifications of the hypothesis that much of what we consider as part and parcel of “the teen years” could be a repetitive sleep deprivation condition. I mean, whoa…

    • hakea says:

      This book is on my wish list. Interesting to read your comments Nathan.

      Scientists here have been talking about adolescents and sleep deprivation for at least the last five years. It’s no wonder that the rate of depression is increasing in that age bracket.

      Kids have become so plugged in to all of the devices that keep their brains buzzing and socialising into the wee hours – mobile phones, electronic games, computers, etc, they find it difficult to switch off. Now the iPhone is readily available, it’s all things in one – phone, internet, games – very addictive.

      Thanks for the reminder.

    • Hi Nathan,
      Yes, I was impressed with the information about sleep deprivation too. Certainly our kids are less content and calm when after they have had a later night than usual. I will be very interested to see how it all works out during those teen years…:)

  9. Jennifer Burden says:


    I’m a big fan of this book, too!! The chapter on “Why Kids Lie” has totally changed how I talk to my daughter. She tells me so much more now!

    Jen 🙂

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