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Superparenting for ADD: An Innovative Approach to Raising Your Distracted Child
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Superparenting for ADD: An Innovative Approach to Raising Your Distracted Child

3.95 of 5 stars 3.95  ·  rating details  ·  229 ratings  ·  55 reviews
With decades of experience working with ADD children, Dr. Edward Hallowell–a pediatric psychiatric clinician, father of two ADD children, and himself an adult with ADD–understands how easily the gifts of this condition are lost on a child amid negative comments from doctors, teachers, and even loving but frustrated parents. Hallowell has long argued that ADD is too often m ...more
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published December 30th 2008 by Ballantine Books (first published January 2002)
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Emily
Another positive reframing of ADD. It's so refreshing to hear your child's traits described in a constructive way rather than so negatively. For example, what is seen in traditional school settings as "distractibility" is a manifestation of an active curiosity. Impulsivity, which is a major struggle for many kids (and adults) with ADHD, is reframed as creativity. And hyperactivity or restlessness is defined as a level of energy of which I'm jealous. I appreciate the solid emphasis on loving your ...more
Jessica
Wow...I learned so much from this book! I would recommend it for ANY parent, whether you have an ADD child or not. Some parts may not apply and you can skim through them, but this has made me a better mother for all my kids...not just the ADD kid. AND: It it has made me PROUD to be a mother of a child with ADD, improved my relationship with her and brought her grades up!
Rachael
I LOVED this book from page 1. The intro was so unlike any other books I've read about kids with special needs. It's optimistic and hopeful, love-based, strength-based and I really appreciated that different approach. I don't know that Carver fits all the characteristics of ADD, but there was enough overlap with his set of issues to be helpful. It sometimes felt like other parenting books: too much talk about WHY this works without as many specific directions about HOW to make it work at your ho ...more
Nancy
I just love Edward Hallowell. Driven to Distraction and Delivered from Distraction are also great books by him. What I loved best about this book was that parents should trust their instincts about their own kids, and parent from their children's strengths, rather than focus on their "deficits." Hallowell has a lot of great alternative ways to look at ADD--"supercharged brain" rather than a "problem with your brain." On p. 81 he has a very cool chart of negative trait associated with ADD, and ac ...more
Dahlene
My second grade son was just diagnosed with ADHD. He's been having trouble in school with learning disabilities since kindergarten, but with further testing we've come to the conclusion that he also has ADD. Most parents look at it as a death sentence when they hear that news, but our doctor had a different approach. He told us we needed to read this book to understand that kids with ADD have supercharged brains like a Ferrari, but have bicycle brakes when it comes to keeping focused. This book ...more
Grace
I can't take another ADD rah-rah pep talk. The problem in my household is not that the ADDers are a put-upon, misunderstood minority. It's the non-ADDer that is put-upon to do all the shit work that is not fun enough for the ADDers to do for themselves--even with all the checklists and systems in the world.

ADD is a valid brain difference, but there is no excuse for laziness and passive-aggressiveness.
Summer B.
I really enjoyed this book. As an ADHD mom with an ADHD preschooler, I thought it was a wonderful and much break from the heavy info dump feeling I've gotten from other books.

That said, this is not the book to read if you are looking for a detailed plan of what ADHD/ADD looks like, and what to do about it. This is the book to read after you've read those books and are totally overwhelmed and discouraged, and convinced your kid is going to end up in jail or dead from a crazy thrill-seeking adven
...more
Kelly
Dec 01, 2014 Kelly rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2014
This book is light on the practical advice and heavy on convincing you that your kid with ADD is a present waiting to be unwrapped. I think you've already bought into this idea if you're reading the book. The behavioral strategies in the back are helpful. Kinda heavy on the heartwarming anecdotes and references to things like the Kolbe model (just $50 to take an online test to discover your own Kolbe score!) without sufficient explanation to apply it to parenting/helping your kid with school, al ...more
Brigid
Another reviewer described this book, I believe, as long on pep talk but short on practical advice. I'd agree with that assessment. There is a lot of good information and what practical advice is given is good, it's just getting to it that can be a bit tedious. The anecdotes provided are helpful but I felt that sometimes they bogged down the text a bit. Overall, I'd recommend this book to anyone just starting out on the journey with an ADD diagnosis - either for themselves or their child - as th ...more
Sheri
The authors of this book did a nice job of highlighting the positive traits exhibited by those with ADHD, pointing out that like everyone else, they have their strengths and weaknesses. In general, though, I felt like this book could have been summed up by, "Find your child's strengths and highlight them; then teach your child his/her weaknesses and how to work around them." I felt like I was left wanting...something more.
Jorge Caperon
Unwrapping My Son's Gift

This book has helped me understand my son and his/our gift. My son without his/our gift would have been another average kid. After reading this book I learned how to be more patient and the unlimited potential he has to offer. I'm helping him unwrap himself into what he is meant to be. I wouldn't have it any other way, thank you.
M
This is a refreshing look at attention issues. It touches on clinical things--diagnoses, medications, and therapies, but it is mostly encouragement and direction for positive parenting. It is specific to Attention Deficit Disorders, but much of the philosophy and information can be applied to parenting any child or being any adult who doesn't fit into the "sit still, listen, do exactly as you're told and finish your work/test" mold.
Kathryn
I really need to buy this book. I don't have a diagnosis of ADD for my child BUT this book helped me see how many traits she has that are similar so there definitely is a possibility she does. I LOVE the approach this book takes of dealing with a child with ADD. The authors continually call it a "gift" and try to teach their patients that they have a racecar brain (which is AWESOME!) but just normal car brakes which is what they have to work on. It's all so loving and powerful and uplifting. I l ...more
Juliana Haught
I read this book by alternating bursts of reading with time to absorb. What I like about Hallowell's books about ADD is how positive he is about the diagnosis and the fabulous qualities and traits in people with ADD/ADHD, without brushing aside the very real challenges that it carries, especially how frustrating it can be for school. Like many of these books that talk about "how to live with xyz", it's reassuring for the things you're already doing right, and maybe a little daunting for things s ...more
Sharon
I almost did not select this book - I am not at all into the idea of Superparenting, on any level. However, it did have a lot of useful suggestions for dealing with high energy kids.
Erika Ansley
This was an interesting and very different look/approach to parenting/working with students who have the "gift" of ADD. These "race car brain" children with "faulty breaks" have many special gifts that just need to be unwrapped through support and love from adults in their lives.

It provided a useful link to the Kolbe testing online, which lets you know what type of learner you and your child are and how to connect and get through to different types of learners.

I loved that Brain Gym was mention
...more
Julie
Feb 25, 2013 Julie rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: adult
This was suggested by an acquaintance, and I found the first half to be especially helpful. I was surprised to learn that some of my son's positive qualities are often associated with kids with ADD: creativity, sensitivity, bigheartedness, charisma, imagination, and the ability to think outside the box. The book lost me a bit when it discussed conation - I get it in a general sense, but the concept and online test aren't really geared toward younger kids.

This is a good book to help you feel opti
...more
Cory
Excellent resource for learning how to approach parenting with an ADHD child. Highly recommended!
Michelle
WOW! So much good information-- I have to go back and take some notes. HIGHLY recommended for anyone dealing with this issue.
Crystal
One of the biggest take-aways I had about this book was to love the child I have (not that I didn't, but it's a good reminder for parents dealing with the frustrations of ADHD) and to see ADHD as a gift waiting to be unveiled. As a teacher myself and having worked with students with ADHD, I thought I had the skills to parent a child with ADHD, but teaching and parenting are two very different things. While the books didn't give me many more specific strategies than I already had, it did help me ...more
Grace
After my daughter was recently diagnosed with ADHD I was feeling at kind of a loss as to what to do. There's so much conflicting information out there that as a parent it is hard to know how to handle the situation. This book really helped me see ADHD from a different perspective, one that made me feel less hopeless about our situation, and I think will be really helpful to our family.
Lucretia Bailey


Regarding helpful solutions, this book sets up a good foundation toward understanding ADD and ADHD and the use of the "strength-based" approach, positive outlook, and unconditional love. It is a cheerleader intended to give hope; it does provide a good and possible starting point for parents...*continued reading of other sources are necessary, since there is more breadth to topics associated with ADD and ADHD than what is covered in this book. This book is very easy to read..very inspiring and b
...more
Donna Pelley
Great resource on ADD.
Julie Benoit
Informative but not as helpful as I hoped :(
Leigh Ann
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jean
A very positive attitude and fairly enjoyable read, but long on the pep talk and short on practical strategies.
Patricia
This is a great book for focusing on the strengths of a child who has ADD. After being constantly told about what my daughter could not do and would always have problems doing, this book calmed my fears. School will always be a struggle in a traditional classroom, but my daughter doesn't learn everything at school. Later in life, there are plenty of jobs that actually use the strengths that a lot of people with ADD have.
Jessica
loved it. a great follow-up to "driven to distraction." i love the idea of looking at your child's ADD as a gift to be unwrapped. having add/adhd is NOT a death sentence. kids with this disorder have amazing potential and perspectives. the core principle of just LOVING your child as the base for your superparenting really resonated with me as well. great book and i would highly recommend this one as well!
Bridget
This is the BEST book I have read on ADD/ADHD ever - and trust me I have read many in the past year. I even bought one and gave it to a friend. I am not awaiting my copy in the mail. It is positive and extremely helpful. It examines your child's strengths and gifts and how to work within that framework, versus looking at the "disability." I would say it is a must read for both parents and teachers!
Regina
One of the things I most enjoyed about this book was knowing that the author grew up with A.D.D., has 2 children with ADD AND yet managed to graduate from Harvard medical school. This diagnosis doesn't mean that you cannot be successful in life. This book gave me a peak into the mind of someone with ADD and helped me appreciate some unique things about my child that are there because of ADD.
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Edward M. Hallowell is a child and adult psychiatrist who specialises in ADD/ADHD and who also has ADHD. He is the co-author of the book Delivered From Distraction. He also created The Hallowell Center for Cognitive and Emotional Health in Sudbury, MA. He is a Harvard alumnus and has been on the faculty of Harvard Medical School since 1983. He received his medical degree from Tulane University Med ...more
More about Edward M. Hallowell...
Driven to Distraction: Recognizing and Coping with Attention Deficit Disorder from Childhood Through Adulthood Delivered from Distraction: Getting the Most out of Life with Attention Deficit Disorder CrazyBusy: Overstretched, Overbooked, and About to Snap! Strategies for Coping in a World Gone ADD The Childhood Roots of Adult Happiness: Five Steps to Help Kids Create and Sustain Lifelong Joy Answers to Distraction

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