BC Counsellor - Fall 2014 - (Page 7)
The Whole Brain Child
By Daniel J. Siegel, MD and Tina Payne Bryson, PhD
Raising children to realize their greatest potential is the ultimate
goal of parents. Yet, the task is more difficult than any couple
could ever imagine prior to having children. In The Whole Brain
Child, Siegel and Bryson use neuroscience to take the reader
into the mind of children (and adults, too, if truth be known) to
unravel instincts and explain behaviours.
Every set of parents with two or more children knows that
even though the parents remain the same, each child manifests
their own individuality and no two are the same. One child may
be easy to parent and the next child very difficult. Does this
mean that parents are powerless in the face of the genetics of
their children? Certainly not, say the authors. This book helps
guide parents into a depth of understanding what is going on
in the brains of their children and how to tap into that activity
to steer children in a new direction. We are not stuck in our
circumstances, but without knowledge, we are not likely to
make successful changes.
Brain changes are the greatest in younger
children, but neuroplasticity is viable at any
age making the strategies offered in this
book valuable to everyone.
Each chapter focuses on a different relational function
and offers strategies and pointers to help parents navigate
rough patches and re-direct into healthy growth. Siegel and
Bryson begin by exploring the difference between thriving
and surviving, and how to guide our children into situations
to help their brains develop and wire in healthy patterns, thus
offering a way to thrive rather than just survive. The rest of
the book focuses on integration - right and left hemispheres;
frontal lobes and emotion; building memory - finally taking
us to building boundaries by integrating the self with others.
Each chapter features a snappy saying to help busy
parents remember and for those who still lose
information there is a pull-out refrigerator page.
An example of these mnemonics is "name it to
tame it," which reminds us to teach our children
words for all their emotions while treating these
emotions just as what they are, brain-based reactions
to environmental changes.
This book is just as valuable to counselors as it is to
parents, as the neuroscience presented is just as valid
when applied to older children (or yes, even adults) as
to younger. Brain changes are the greatest in younger
children, but neuroplasticity is viable at any age making the strategies offered in this book valuable to
everyone. When we work with others to help them
make changes in their lives, an understanding of
how brains react to changes is always useful
information. This book is a great one to read then
keep handy on a shelf nearby.
Is there a book on your reading list? Have
you read a book you would like to share with
your colleagues? Contributions to the book
review are always welcome. We will even
buy you a book to review! Contact the Editor,
Barbara Zang, at email@example.com
with the title of your book. Wait for your free
book to arrive in the mail, read it, and write a
review for this magazine.
BC Counsellor | Winter/Fall 2014 | www.bcschoolcounsellor.com
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of BC Counsellor - Fall 2014
The Fine Print
Empowering Others, Empowering Ourselves
Counsellor Compassion Fatigue: How to Find Balance
Go Ahead – ‘Waste’ a Day
Stress and Children’s Self-Regulation
More Than a Yoga Butt!
Index to Advertisers
BC Counsellor - Fall 2014