Exploring Montreal with Kids | Découvrir Montréal avec les Enfants

What do we do with the kids this weekend? | Qu’est-ce qu’on pourrait bien faire avec les enfants cette fin de semaine?

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By Michael Schleifer, Leonie Richler, and Lee Londei

The full title (above) of MUTUAL RESPECT WITH TEENAGERS sums up very well what this book is about. Written by the grandfather of three youths, this paperback explores many themes of trans-generational communication. The subject matter is topical because youths today are dealing with many issues from drugs, to sexuality, to gambling, to anorexia, etc and it is not always clear how to address these concerns with them. While these issues are not particularly new, many parents today might be at a loss in knowing how to discuss them. The intended audience is composed of parents of today’s adolescents, as well as teachers, psychologists, and others who work with teenagers and/or their parents. The concepts covered tend to be basic and introductory.

The book begins with basic issues of morality, such as when we should tell the truth and when “white lies” might be appropriate.  When today’s teenagers ask their mom or dad to describe her or his own experience with drugs, what is the best way to respond? How honest should the adult be? Schleifer gives good, common-sense advice here while bringing forth concepts that many parents probably understood without knowing the term for it (i.e. asymmetrical respect). The latter term describes how you can respect your adolescent children while still treating them differently than you would your adult friends.

In other instances, Schleifer goes against conventional wisdom, suggesting that children should not be forced to kiss an aunt on the cheek after she has just brought them a present. The consequences of such an enforced kiss may lead adolescents to later believe that physical affection is required as a sign of gratitude in situations of possible sexual innuendo. The book gives other age-appropriate and gender-appropriate advice for raising teenagers, most particularly in a North American context.

Schleifer, who is also the author of TALKING ABOUT FEELINGS AND VALUES WITH CHILDREN, has solid academic credentials to write such books; holding Ph.D.s in both philosophy and psychology. Schleifer knows the territory and makes appropriate references to other pertinent titles within the pages of his book, and writes in a way that is easy to read. But there could be more practical examples of how to communicate with teenagers, especially in difficult or ambiguous situations.

The book’s extensive index allows for skimming and facilitates the finding of specific concepts. I recommend this book.

ISBN 10: 1550593471 / 1-55059-347-1
ISBN 13: 9781550593471
Publisher: Detselig Enterprises, Limited
Publication Date: 2007
120 pages
Suggested price $28.95

DISCLAIMER:  John does know Michael Schleifer, a fellow author from Montreal.

Last Updated on Thursday, 15 September 2011 22:48  


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