Playful Parenting Book Discussion, Chapters 13-15

November 1st, 2010 by Dionna | 6 Comments
Posted in Book Discussions, Carnival and Special Series, Gentle Discipline Ideas, Successes, and Suggestions, Gentle/Positive Discipline, natural parenting, Respond with Sensitivity, Reviews and Giveaways

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Welcome to the fifth and final discussion of Lawrence Cohen’s Playful Parenting. Today we are discussing chapters 13-15. Questions and scenarios for discussion are below, but please don’t feel limited by our talking points.

Please read to the end, I need your feedback AND there are giveaway details!

Chapters 13-15 Summary

Applying Playful Parenting to even the most difficult of situations results in a win-win. Disciple and sibling rivalry are constant challenges in parenting that often result in one party feeling victorious and the other defeated. By identifying reasons for each challenge, getting on the floor and playing, both parents and children can have full cups and a winning partnership.

Chapter 13 Questions

1) What support system or plan do you have in place for when you need to cool off before dealing with your child?

2) Cohen identifies the main problem with time being that “they enforce isolation on children who are probably already feeling isolated and disconnected.” Time-outs are a much debated topic in gentle parenting. After reading what Cohen has to say, how do you feel? Has Playful Parenting changed your thoughts on time-outs at all?

3) On pages 241-2 Cohen supports gentle disciple by saying that punishment gets children to be obedient, but gentle guidance instills good judgement. If the information on these pages strikes a cord with you, reread it. Get to know it well, and then write it out in your own words. Not only is it important for us to clearly identify the reason we do what we do with our children, but it is important to be able to intelligently defend it if ever asked.

4) How do you prevent poor behaviors from happening? What clues you in to an oncoming meltdown or challenge?

Chapter 14 Questions

1) Do you have a rule of thumb as to when you step in on sibling battles? If you don’t have a general rule of thumb, how do you make the decision as to when to step in?

2) Sometimes it may feel as thought there is barely enough time in a day to give enough “fill-ups” to each child’s cup. Lets brainstorm a list of quick fill-ups that can reassure a child while still allowing us to keep the daily flow going. These should be things that take just a minute or two and involve little or no resources outside of you and the child.

3) Playful parenting with siblings can be a challenge when the siblings have a large gap in age or have very different interests. Cohen had suggested water as a level ground in which children can make a connection. What other mediums can we use with siblings that create common ground?

Chapter 15 Questions

1) Who is your “listener” and what do you value most in their listening?

2) What are your feelings on reaching out to other parents in public? Have you ever done so? How did it turn out?

3) Take a look at yourself as a playmate and as objectively as possible, determine what kind of playmate you are to your children. Then set a goal. Decide what kind of playmate you would like to be and write down a few ways that you could move in that direction.

Book Giveaway and Feedback Please!

Well – it looks like the first two weeks of our discussion went really well, and then we lost steam. That’s partially my fault – I’ve been going crazy getting ready for Natural Parent Network‘s official launch (today, please stop by!!).

I have a suggestion. The new site will have forums, what about having one post with a summary and questions to discuss, then we can move our conversation over to the forums. I feel like having dedicated discussion threads might make things easier to follow (as far as reading and replying to other people’s responses). There are so many great parenting resources that I’d love to discuss with you, and I think this online venue has value for busy parents. Please weigh in on moving discussions to the NPN forums.

And now for the giveaways! There will be two, one for the CD version of Playful Parenting (potential holiday gift perhaps?) and one of Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves.1

To enter, you will need to write a guest post for Code Name: Mama. Your post must present a recent challenge you have had with your child and how you addressed it gently – preferably using one of the methods you learned about in Playful Parenting (or S.A.L.V.E., if you’ve read ROCRO before). Posts must adhere to my contributor guidelines, and by submitting a post for consideration, you acknowledge that it may be posted on my site. [2. You may change names to protect your privacy, but please leave ages/behavior intact.

Posts are due no later than Monday, November 8 at 9:00p.m. CST. And don’t worry if you aren’t the world’s best writer – for starters, neither am I; but for purposes of the giveaway, I am going to select one winner at random and one winner based on your story. It’s the story (and your gentle/playful parenting success) that counts, not your writing. Plus, I’m a pretty good editor (wink wink).

You do not need to have followed along with all of the Playful Parenting posts to enter/win, but you do need to have read the book.

Any questions?

Thank you all so much for reading and following along, Kelly and I have enjoyed the opportunities to delve into the book more thoroughly.

  1. This is the book I had mentioned initially, but it may not be the next book we do for our discussions. You can actually choose which one you want – ROCRO, or our next book, which will probably be Respectful Parents, Respectful Kids.

6 Responses to:
"Playful Parenting Book Discussion, Chapters 13-15"

  1. Rachael   RachaelNevins

    Hey, Dionna, I’m planning to come back and comment again on Chapters 13 and 15, which were perhaps my favorites in the book. But first I wanted to jump in and say that I like the idea of using the forums for discussion. I felt like my reading was out of sync with your posts — either I was behind in the reading or I read the chapters a while before the post and had forgotten the details of what was important to me. With the forums, I imagine being able to jump in and out of an ongoing discussion.

    Thanks for giving me a reason to read this wonderful book! The ideas about using play to connect and work through problems, the metaphor of the cup, and the sentence in Chapter 13 (that I can’t find now!) about teaching CO-OPERATION instead of obedience … all of this has been invaluable. My question is, how do I bring these ideas into practice? I’m afraid I’m going to forget it all. Another question, how do I share these ideas with my husband, who would probably welcome the ideas but is unlikely to read the book himself?

    Thanks again!

    • Dionna   CodeNameMama

      Thanks Rachael – I wanted to touch on the question about your partner right now, because it’s something I’ve been thinking about at our house too. I’m going to pose the question on Facebook to see what kind of feedback we can get. I’ll be back with more thoughts later too!

  2. so funny – rachael’s comment just took the words out of my mouth!

    i love the idea of the forums, too!
    i fell behind on the reading and was kicking myself a couple weeks in for not staying on top of it so i could get the most out of the comments from readers.

    and i’ve been thinking *a lot* lately about putting it all into practice!
    real-life scenarios/examples/success stories are always the most helpful for me… they’re my favorites to read – they help me process the ideas and think about putting them to work in everyday life.

    i bought alfie kohn’s “unconditional parenting” on dvd and my husband and i watched it together… that was a big turning point in getting him to *really* understand and embrace all the *stuff* i’d been talking to him about from all the books i’ve read.
    i would love to hear more about getting husbands and partners excited about all of this, too.

    xo sara

  3. Sara   FamilyOrganic

    First, I also would love to see the discussion on the forum, I think that following the threads would be much easier over there. On the feedback thing, I felt a little overwhelmed by the amount of questions each time. They were all good questions, but it was a lot, so maybe space them out over two posts a week instead of one big one? Just a thought.

    I struggle with getting my hubby on board in general with my natural parenting tendencies. I think he feels like I’m a runaway train. First breastfeeding, then cding, now no spanking? Who is the woman he married? ;)

    On the preventing poor behaviors from occurring… I’m going to sound an awful lot like my mom, but here it is – sleep! I feel like rest is such an undervalued thing for our kids (and ourselves) now. I meet so many parents with toddlers who put their kids down to sleep at 9 or 10 pm and naps if/when it fits in the parent’s schedule and the kid just deals with it. Except that it is stressful for the child. Then the child acts out from sheer exhaustion and is spanked, or put in time out, or yelled at. How well do you function on 60% rest? I don’t function well at all. Why would I expect my one year olds to be able to do better than me?

    • Dionna   CodeNameMama

      I don’t think I made it clear enough that we didn’t expect everyone to answer all of the questions ;) We really just wanted to ask enough that there would be plenty of things to start everyone thinking about potential discussions. Would it help to include that in every post? I’m not sure that we did.

      And I am writing a post right now about how to involve partners – I hope it will spark some ideas for everyone!

  4. Carrie

    I’ve been meaning to jump into this book discussion, but I was late to start. I think the forums would be a great idea, keeps things going and might make it easier to re-visit.

    And on to the discussion..

    As for time-outs, I used to work in childcare and often saw time-outs used, but I don’t think they were ever effective, usually it created more of a problem and a lot of resentment. I think a “meeting on the couch” would work much better and I hope to try that tactic at my house.

    Some fill-up ideas are saying “I love you”, stopping what you are doing for a minute to truly listen to your child and look them in the eye, or make up and sing a silly or endearing song about your child.

    Finding a listener and a supportive group of parenting friends has been a huge challenge for me. I’m a SAHM in a small New England town and my husband and I have only 1 car and its usually with him at work. Making connections with like minded parents seems impossible. My daughter, who is an only child, also craves a play group or playmates.

    I love his idea of reaching out to other parents in public, break down those towers of isolation!

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