Babble Recaps Nurtureshock Author Talk

nurture-shock1Last night, Babble tweeted live from Ashley Merryman’s discussion of her buzzworthy NurtureShock at the 92nd Street Y in Tribeca.

We were so fascinated by this book when it first debuted.  With chapters spanning from “Why White Parents Don’t Talk About Race” to “The Inverse Power of Praise”, co-authors Po Bronson and Merryman hooked  us on their new approach to parenting. Time and again, they proved that the conventional wisdom was anything but. (Here’s Amy Kuras’ conversation with Po Bronson in case you missed it.)

Last night proved no different. The place was full of parents (who asked tons of  great questions), and on Twitter, there was lots of chat about many of the intriguing stats, opinions, and thoughts Merryman shared with the audience. In case you couldn’t join us for the live discussion, we’re sharing all our tweets here. Enjoy, and be sure to follow us on Twitter @BabbleEditors for future live tweeting events–we’d love to have you.

See our NurtureShock tweets after the jump, and share your thoughts in the comments!

  • Just arrived at nurtureshock talk a little early; chatting with ashley merryman about how excited she is to be here!
  • talking to a. merryman: “i love talking to people about the ideas in the book and getting their reactions and what speaks to them.”
  • ashley merryman and po bronson have 30+ events lined up this year on #nurtureshock and more to come.
  • the crowd’s filling up at the #nurtureshock talk…we’ve even got a baby in the audience! can’t wait for it to begin!
  • we’re about to begin the #nurtureshock talk; room is packed with parents. just met a dad from the nyc dads group who is co-sponsoring event.
  • nyc dads blog posted about the event here: http://www.nycdadsgroup.com/
  • just learned that the power and peril of praising kids, the ny magazine article by po and ashley was the most emailed piece on their site.
  • is it valuable to praise kids for their intelligence? a. merryman is taking a survey; nobody’s raising hands because most have read book.
  • kids praised for intelligence are more likely to cheat; that way they can blame the other person. because it’s a safety net. #nurtureshock.
  • for many people–including a. merryman–it’s hard for us to do things we’re not good at, we don’t enjoy it. #nurtureshock
  • discussing fixed intelligence vs. malleable talent: which is true, and what should we teach our kids? #nurtureshock
  • study: 20 hours of board games over 8 weeks increased kids iq from below average to average. wow. increased dopamine=increased learning
  • a merryman: a kid’s brain is indeed malleable; still working out how we can cross-train it. #nurtureshock
  • power and peril of praising kids article can be read here: http://nymag.com/news/features/27840/
  • study: kids that are grade-hungry (concerned with getting answers right or wrong) don’t hold information. #nurtureshock
  • a merryman: for kids, playing is how they learn best. #nurtureshock
  • a merryman: lack of self-awareness (i.e. playing hide & seek) actually helps self-control.
  • qwirkle board game (http://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/25669/qwirkle) great to develop kids’ self-control. #nurtureshock
  • talking about mischel’s marshallow experiment: kids that could wait did better on their SATS. reason? self-control. #nurtureshock
  • focus when we teach kids self-control isn’t discipline, but self-direction: the kid that’s motivated and engaged in what they’re doing
  • you can read about mischel’s marshmallow test here: http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2009/05/18/090518fa_fact_lehrer #nurtureshock
  • a merryman: praise and love are NOT the same thing. praise is recognition for achievement; actual achievement–not getting out of bed.
  • intermittent reinforcement is the strongest way to praise our kids. so our kids won’t expect it. intermittent teaches persistence.
  • a merryman just encouraged us to twitter this to everyone on the web: praise means BE HONEST. #nurtureshock
  • instead of saying “it’s beautiful” to a child’s drawing, try: “i really like the colors you used.” giving them tools to replicate in future.
  • it was hard to stop praising her kids for every little thing. instead, she pays attention to little things like how hard they’ve worked.
  • not praising our kids for everything teaches them to trust our opinions. #nurtureshock
  • most kids development comes from pretend play, i.e. imagination play. rather than say, hula-hooping. #nurtureshock
  • a merryman: we need to share with our kids that failure is okay, as long as they learn from the experience. #nurtureshock
  • when a kid misses a soccer shot, don’t say “you’ll get it next time,” that insinuates that failure is so awful we must not speak of it.
  • give your kids a chance to see how you recover from mistakes, rather than explaining. #nurtureshock
  • how early should we worry about overresponding to kids? a reader asks. a merryman says kids of all ages are affected by it. #nurtureshock
  • a merryman: i see parents all the time praising their kids for going down slide. what? kids WANT to go down the slide. #nurtureshock
  • study: as diversity in schools increase, cross-race friendships decrease. #nurtureshock
  • little kids look for traits like them: blonde hair and pigtails like them. “she looks just like me so we’ll be friends.” #nurtureshock
  • we have to actually talk to kids about appearances; looks do not define them. we have to teach kids not to assume. #nurtureshock
  • exposing kids to diverse environments is not all kids need to understand diversity. we also need to explain what it means. #nurtureshock
  • why is our generation of parents not raising angels? it’s not parenting failure; kids learn aggression. how we respond is key. #nurtureshock
  • most important thing to help babies learn language is not barrage of words. it’s selective responses as child progresses and gets better.

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