Positive Discipline: The First Three Years — Book Review

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Cross-posted from Goodreads.

I became a first-time father last year of a cuddly little girl. I have never been popular among little kids, possibly because I’ve not been too fond of them. But then comes along this cute little thing which melts my heart on her every giggle, cry, and smile. To inculcate in her values such as confidence, self-reliance, courage, and respect, I had promised to develop myself as a good parent. Reading this book is an excellent first step toward that goal, one that will require more practice and learning from mistakes. Better said than done!

I had my notions of a good parent, which I got from my own upbringing and cultural heritage. Positive Discipline is a book that re-enforces those notions and adds a few more valuable teachings.

The book is not ground-shattering or anything like that. It is a collection of age-old parental wisdom, carefully curated and given a structure. I found it to be pretty comprehensive—covering everything from how a child sees the world to things that are in and out of her control—and providing tips and strategies to deal with this knowledge. Topics such as temperament, sleeping, eating, and special needs are covered well. Each chapter ends with questions to ponder, which act as summaries of the chapter and exercises a parent should follow.

I liked the chapter on exposure to modern technology; it had answers to many of my questions. The description of a child’s journey (and experiences) from womb to walking is thought-provoking (chapter 4), forcing you to think of the child’s behavior from her perspective.

While the book makes valuable and handy reference material, it generally doesn’t add lessons that are not available in cultural wisdom. It’s also a bit repetitive in lots of places, which may or may not be a good thing, depending on how fast you read this book.

Overall, I enjoyed it and highlighted it like crazy to make my next reading a lot quicker.

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