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New books enter ranks of 'parenting guides'


April 2, 1999
Web posted at: 2:00 p.m. EST (1900 GMT)

(CNN) -- Parenting is one of the most challenging jobs men and women ever tackle. Even before a child is born, parents often spend hours thinking about how they are going to raise her, teach her, discipline her, afford to send her to college, and at the same time stay sane themselves.

Below are four new books that have entered the ranks of "parenting guide."

'The Parenting Companion: Meditations and Exercises for Giving the Love that Heals'

Husband and wife team Harville Hendrix, Ph.D. and Helen Hunt, M.A., M.L.A. have written "The Parenting Companion: Meditations and Exercises for Giving the Love that Heals" to help men and women get through the challenge of parenting one day at a time.

Published by Pocket Books, it sets out to help parents heal their own emotional wounds in order to better nurture emotionally healthy children.

The book contains a meditation for each day of the year. Meditations in the book touch on a wide range of topics from, "saying no with love" to "seeing your children through different eyes."

Hendrix is a therapist who specializes in couple and marital therapy, and is the author of three previous books: "Getting the Love You Want: A Guide for Couples," "Keeping the Love you Find: A Guide for Singles," and "Giving the Love that Heals: A Guide for Parents."

'Raising Lifelong Learners: A Parent's Guide'

Perseus Books has released a new guide for parents by author Lucy Calkins with Lydia Bellino. Both are teacher-educators at Teachers College at Columbia University.

Start from the premise that parents are a child's "first and most important teacher." The book, "Raising Lifelong Learners", focuses on building rich learning environments in the home.

The book looks at parents as educators and gives advice on how to help a child with early reading, writing and math, but doesn't focus specifically on how parents can help with schoolwork.

According to the author, her "definition of education includes our children's explorations alongside a creek, the social graces they need to use when we parents have company over the dinner, and the mind-work of play."

Calkins contends that children learn the major disciplines of writing, reading and math from parents even when they don't realize they are teaching them. "The qualities that mater most in science math, reading and writing -- initiative, thoughtfulness, curiosity, resourcefulness, perseverance, and imagination are best nurtured through the 'everydayness' of our shared lives at home," she writes.

The author admits this book isn't about what to do when things go wrong, but is about trying to do things right.

'How to Handle a Hard-to-Handle Kid: A Parent's Guide to Understanding and Changing Problem Behaviors'

In his new book, "How to Handle a Hard-to-Handle Kid: A Parent's Guide to Understanding and Changing Problem Behaviors," child Psychologist Drew Edwards suggests strategies for coping with children who can challenge even the most patient parents.

Published by Free Spirit Publishing, the book says the good news is that parenting a hard-to-handle kid isn't impossible.

Drew sets out to help parents identify why some children are difficult to handle. From there, he lays out specific strategies for handling some everyday problems, makes suggestions for how to be an authoritative parents and respond more effectively to difficult behaviors. Finally he tells parents on how they can better care of themselves.

'Investing for Your Child's College Education'

In "Investing for Your Child's College Education," author Mike Powell points out that for many people sending a child to college is the biggest investment they will ever make, next to buying a home.

For those that send their children to an Ivy League school, tuition, books and room and board may well exceed the cost of that home.

Powers has put together a resource for financial planning for parents who are looking ahead to their child's college education.

The book, published by Third Millennium Press, includes projected college costs, advise on when to start saving, how to consult a financial planner, how to get grants, scholarships and other financial aid, and information on how the government makes financial aid assessments.

Avon Books
Free Spirit Publishing
Perseus Books
Pocket Books
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