Between Parent and Child: The Bestselling Classic That Revolutionized Parent-Child Communication
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Between Parent and Child: The Bestselling Classic That Revolutionized Parent-Child Communication

4.15 of 5 stars 4.15  ·  rating details  ·  650 ratings  ·  132 reviews
Over the past thirty-five years, Between Parent and Child has helped millions of parents around the world strengthen their relationships with their children. Written by renowned psychologist Dr. Haim Ginott, this revolutionary book offered a straightforward prescription for empathetic yet disciplined child rearing and introduced new communication techniques that would chan...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published July 22nd 2003 by Harmony (first published 1965)
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K
Between Parent and Haim Ginott

Khaya: Dr. Ginott, I have so many feelings about your book. It’s hard for me to sort them all out.

Dr. Ginott: You’re confused and you don’t know where to start. You feel many different things.

Khaya: Yes! I have friends who swear by you and your methods. They think you’re great.

Dr. Ginott: Khaya, evaluative words like “great” do not represent helpful praise. Praise should deal only with the person’s efforts and accomplishments, not with his character and personality...more
Summer
No parenting book is perfect, but I can honestly say that this is the first book that has helped me change my behavior in less than a week of reading it. It deals more with psychology and understanding the basis of why we should treat our children (and all people) a certain way. I think the behavior change came very naturally because I understood my daughter's emotions so much better within a few chapters. This book comes highly recommended and is helping me in more relationships than one.

I just...more
Vivcaudle
This book I read in one of my child/family classes in college. This is my favorite of all the texts I read in this area of study. I highly recommend this book to every parent! Easy and fast reading.
Marie Feinauer
Nov 20, 2008 Marie Feinauer rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Marie by: Rick
This book had some good points, but it was quite preachy, and used "should" language a lot. It is the predecessor to book: Raising an Emotionally Intellegent Child. It was the reason they decided to do all the research for that book. It has good points on how to relate with your children. Some of it seems somewhat out of touch. Some of it does not fit with my value system (for example, how permissive we should be with our children about premarital sex.) And I know that if I was in the middle of...more
Jen
Ok. First of all, I AM NOT PREGNANT. (Nor do I have children.)

Good, glad we cleared that up. So why am I reading a parenting book, you might ask? Well, one of my main self-improvement goals for the past few years has been to improve my communication skills, especially with relation to conflict resolution and emotions.

This book was mentioned in an advice column that has been entertaining me recently ("Dear Prudence" from Slate Magazine). The concepts mentioned in the book intrigued me because the...more
Chalida
Liam's preschool's book club book. Definitely eye-opening and I couldn't help reflecting on how my parents didn't communicate with me well growing up. It has already made me talk to Liam differently not to mention my students. While it sounds easy, in the moment, it's sometimes hard to remember. Reflecting your child's feelings is key. Acknowledging their wishes and desires is a must. Every phrase we use has to be in the name of humanity and creating a human being so no judging, criticizing or n...more
Betty
Reading a book on parenting is the easy part but applying its principles is quite another. Yet with this book, I could start applying Ginotte's techniques from the moment I started reading and I found them to be extremely effective. I now find it easier to communicate with my two-year old and in particular, to handle her emotional outbursts in a more mature and empathetic way. The book is full of practical advice and real-life examples and is very easy to read, especially for an exhausted mom. B...more
Jared
Haim Ginott (wish I knew how to pronounce his name) was a mentor to John Gottman (Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child) and Adele Faber (How to Talk so Kids will Listen...) and they drew heavily from his early work. The book is full of basic parenting gems, but I didn't necessarily agree with all of his suggestions and some of his examples weren't very realistic. I would recommend the Gottman and Faber & Mazlish books first.
C
I think Dr. Ginott's work is very wonderful. This book, however, is dated. The gender and sexuality components are simply too 1950s and are beyond not useful and into potentially harmful, in my opinion. So I'm recycling this book. BUT I highly recommend "Liberated Parents, Liberated Children," also in my book list, which is early 1960s, I think, and written by some of the mothers in one Ginott's groups. That one is a little dated, but not too bad, and it retains a lot of the great things Ginott...more
Kelli
This book was eye-opening to me. The author suggests several ways to deal with your children. For example,
1)Say what you see, like, "You must've had a hard day," instead of criticizing them for being in a sullen mood. By simply stating how they're feeling, it diminishes the intensity of the feeling. They see that you understand which helps them deal with the emotion.
2)He also says you should never comment on character traits (even positive ones), but always on actions. So, instead of saying, "Yo...more
Toni
I had high expectations for this book. I studied Dr. Ginott's ideas as they pertained to education, and agreed generally w/ his approach when it came to the teachers/student relationship.
The first few chapters were fine. I agree that we should praise children for their efforts; not the finished product, I agree that children tune us out when we sermonize or lecture and that anyone is incapable of truly communicating when emotions are highly charged. Ginott also talks about the importance of kid...more
Heather Clark
3. Between Parent and Child: Yes, it's dated, but I love, love, love Haim Ginott. Here's a famous quote of his, that I continue to use: “If you want your children to improve, let them overhear the nice things you say about them to others.” It's a classic, more suited for older kids (over 3 or so) than younger ones. Here's one of a bajillion review/summaries out there: "Perhaps Haim’s genius was helping parents capture the meaning behind children’s words and deeds. There is nothing quite as sooth...more
Katie
I have often wondered what is the "right way" to respond to a child who is misbehaving and/or upset. Dr. Ginott answered my questions -- plus the many more that comes with having a child.

Dr. Ginott teaches us how to communicate not just with our children, but also with other adults. This has been a very eye-opening experience to learn that the way I communicate with others, especially those who are closest to me, may not be the most effective. Dr. Ginott has a great way of teaching through exam...more
Lindsey
Besides that the sample "conversations" between parent and child were laughably unrealistic, I found it helpful. The premise is that you will get the best results from your kids if you empathize with them, not tell them not to whine, not tell them it's no big deal, not ask them questions you already know the answers to, etc. The empathizing doesn't mean you give them what they want, only that you acknowledge their feelings. Children want to feel understood. We'll see how well it works when my ch...more
Danny
I had to read this in college. It is based on positive, goal based child rearing. The focus in on how to communicate effectively to children.
Since Dr. Ginott passed away, the new editor is Dr. H. Wallace Goddard, who is LDS and is a regular contributor to Meridian Magazine.
Dena
This is one of the best parenting/psychology books out there. He's an icon. Also worth reading: How to Talk So Children Will Listen and Listen So Children Will Talk b/c authors are students of Ginott's philosophy.
Ilib4kids
649.1 GIN 2003

Pxiii... He wanted them to learn how to discipline without humiliating, how to criticize without demeaning, how to praise without judging, how to express anger without hurting, how to acknowledge rather than argue with their feeling, perceptions, and opinions. How to respond so children would learn to trust their inner reality and develop self-confidence.

Chap 2: The power of words Better ways to encourage and guide
p32 The single most important rule is that praise deal only with chi...more
Lara
I skipped straight to Chapter 6 for the information on dealing with sibling envy. We are *really* struggling with that right now, so here's hoping some communication changes help us.

Update: I have since read the book in its entirety, and there are a lot of things I really liked about it. Most notably: (1) the reminder that a parent's job is to support the child, not to tear the child down, and the importance of remembering this when working through challenges, and (2) rephrasing one's redirectio...more
Cindy
With one small exception I am really liking this book, and wishing I'd read it 22 years ago!
Cindy
A parent must have book! As a parent of two I highly recommend this book to help you come out of the parenting in the darkness feeling that you might be living with. Ginott presents a way to communicate with your children rather than what you might have been resorting to , screaming or just plain ignoring them and their bad behavior. A number of the ideas that are proposed in the book may seem simple to you and you will begin to wonder why you have forgotten to speak that way to your children. I...more
Krista
Very, VERY thought-provoking. Even when I disagreed with Dr. Ginott (whose last name I'd love to know how to pronounce), it was generally over the implementation of a principle, not the principle itself. His approach kicks the casual, reactionary, parent-child dialogue rather out the door, and it took me a little while to really understand what he was saying.

The biggest concept I took from his book is summarized like this: parents provide physical first aid for physical injuries, but we *also* n...more
Bonnie Brien
I actually took notes while reading, which took me back to college days, but I learned a few great things about parenting. However, I felt like there was no information about, "Well, what if what you suggested doesn't work?" making it seem like kids will be so compliant once you communicate correctly. Yeah right. A lot of info seemed to be for older kids (than mine) but I can apply some info now. Two irritations: the counsel on clothing (sorry, I'm not going to let my daughter dress like a whore...more
Jonathan-David Jackson
I read this book because I had already read Liberated Parents, Liberated Children: Your Guide to a Happier Family and Siblings Without Rivalry: Helping Your Children Live Together So You Can Live Too, and the authors of those books learned from Dr. Ginott, so I was interested to get it from the source. After reading this, though, I believe that they filtered his teachings very well and put the best in their books.

The first half or so of the book is good, although the same information is presente...more
Joe
Between Parent and Child is the best parenting book I've read so far. It begins with a statement to the effect of "Love is vital in parenting, but love is not enough. Parents need knowledge. You would never trust yourself to a surgeon who simply loved their job, but lacked the knowledge required in surgery. Parenting is at least as difficult as surgery."

Dr. Ginott's wisdom about children, parents, teachers, and people in general leaps from each page. He is particularly concerned with validating...more
Andrea
Jun 18, 2007 Andrea rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition Recommends it for: parents
Shelves: non-fiction
I had this parenting book recommended by a website that was dismayed at the plethora of parenting advice that just addresses the situations, without addressing the root cause of problems, and advice that seems lacking in love ("provoke not your children to wrath"). When I got it in the mail, I recognized the cover from my mom's bookshelf, where I had snuck peeks in it as a kid to see what devious techniques my parents were using on us (I was pretty disappointed).

The book's main point is that the...more
Cheri
Best chapter was on the damage evaluative praise can do to children. It described, better than any other parenting book I've read, how to use not just descriptive statements, but statements that allow the child to come to his or her own evaluative conclusion. So then "praise" is a two step process. In the first step, the parent makes a statement such as "that book is very complicated" (external). The next step is the child's internal process, "the book is complicated, but I finished it so I must...more
Libby
This book has a lot in common with "Happiest Toddler on the Block" (a book I'm reading much more slowly because I own it) except this book is more geared for older children who can have normal conversations. Both books basically say that it is more important to let your child know you understand how they feel before reacting to their behavior (if at all). I found a lot of the anecdotal "wrong way to do it" examples a bit extreme, but I suppose it gets the point across. I would like to read this...more
Libbydale
Read a 1952 version of this. It's reiterating the ideas that are discussed in How To Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk, but this time they are straight from the expert himself. There was actually one line I read last night that I disagreed with, a bit of pop pyschology that flies in the face of the teachings of Jesus, but overall, still a lot of great advice on parent/child relationships.
I now know what parents from my childhood had this style of parenting, whether they had
...more
Anne
Jan 23, 2009 Anne rated it 5 of 5 stars Recommends it for: parents
Shelves: parenting
O.K. actually I have yet to finish this book if you must know the truth. But the first two chapters that I have read are great and I truly believe that EVERY parent should read this book when they have kids. In fact I think that every parent-want-to-be should be required to read this book.

This book gives you the tools for learning to communicate effectively and in a respectable manner to your child(ren).

Some of my YES quotes from the book are as follows:
*"Don't be a parent, be a human being who...more
John Markos O'Neill
As a parent, I learned a lot from this book about keeping cool with my kids in stressful situations. Between Parent and Child teaches the reader not to suppress negative emotion but to express it in constructive ways. We've heard these messages before: "Use 'I' messages." Say, "When you scream, it hurts my ears and makes me angry," instead of "Stop screaming right now!" Say, "You wish we could have ice cream now, and it makes you sad that we have to have lunch first," instead of, "No, we can't h...more
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Haim G. Ginott was a teacher, child psychologist and psychotherapist, who worked with children and parents. He pioneered techniques for conversing with children that are still taught today. His book, Between Parent and Child,. stayed on the best seller list for over a year and is still popular today.
More about Haim G. Ginott...
Teacher and Child: A Book for Parents and Teachers Between Parent and Teenager Ginott/Between Parent and Child/Between Parent and Teenager/Teacher and Child التربية المثالية للأبناء Entre Padres E Hijos

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“What do we say to a guest who forgets her umbrella? Do we run after her and say "What is the matter with you? Every time you come to visit you forget something. If it's not one thing it's another. Why can't you be like your sister? When she comes to visit, she knows how to behave. You're forty-four years old! Will you never learn? I'm not a slave to pick up after you! I bet you'd forget your head if it weren't attached to your shoulders." That's not what we say to a guest. We say "Here's your umbrella, Alice," without adding "scatterbrain."
Parents need to learn to respond to their children as they do to guests.”
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