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Gouri Dange’s More ABCs Of Parenting talks about good parenting skills in the 21st century and focuses on dilemmas that modern Indian parents face today.
Rarely do you come across a book that challenges a lot of pre-conceived notions about parenting, without sounding critical about them; More ABCs of Parenting by Gouri Dange does exactly that. It presents parenting tips in an easy-to-understand, non-sermonizing manner. At the same time, it puts forward, what you cannot help but call, myth-busters of common beliefs about parenting.
The book attacks common problems that have troubled parents for centuries. Concurrently, it also talks about methods to handle situations highly relevant to today’s world. There are the usual tips on teaching kids essential life skills like gratitude, kindness, sympathy and respect; but what makes the book worth reading is its lessons on teaching kids how to avoid gender stereotypes, respecting everyone, irrespective of their economic status, gender or vocation, handling body changes and sex education, co-education of kids with special needs, coping with separations and step-parenting. Adults could take a lesson or two here as well.
There are some common myths that the book does away with: “Mom knows best what you should eat” or “even a light smack for your toddler will scar him emotionally for life” are some examples. Every suggestion is supported with real life examples that make the advice sound more believable.
On the flip-side, the book tends to generalize at a few places. Most tips are written with a nuclear family set-up in mind. Extending them to apply to joint and semi-joint family set-ups would be helpful. In addition, use of social networking tools (by kids as young as 7), drug abuse and coping with corruption are things which could find mention in the book, as kids are increasingly exposed to these every day.
All in all, it’s one book both parents and other care-givers in the family must read once. There are a few great tips one can pick up. Improvisations can then be done as per your family’s requirements.
Publishers: Random House.
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