I am reading this as part of Brynn's Parent-Young Toddler class. Babies should be allowed to cry and parents shouldn't jump through so many hoops to get them to stop. Of course, Brynn still wakes up several times a night, so obviously I haven't figured out the right answer either. Of course, we still play together a lot, but I have tried to include some of this free time for Brynn everyday.
A method of parenting that really supports a child learning through exploration of the world (as they are seen as inherent learners) rather than direct instruction.
Most of these are based on the assumption that babies and kids think and act like dignified adults, and even then, some logic is missing.
The advice and ideas espoused in this book rest on two central premises: Major premise; your baby comes built in with the tools it needs to learn and navigate its environment, and will create its own learning problems and discover its own solutions when given freedom to explore the world at its own pace Minor premise; good parenting is less about what you put in early on and more about what you dont, especially with regards to worry, anxiety and active interventionism This doesnt seem that controversial, but if you ask me it flies directly in the face of what I have routinely observed in both American parenting and Asian parenting, for example: American parenting; your baby may be capable of great and wonderful things (which you implicitly choose for it), but like a Calvinist, you will only know for sure if you actively work to develop these talents and capabilities in your child. Gerber offers these basic principles: basic trust in the child to be an initiator, an explorer and a self-learner an environment for the child that is physically safe, cognitively challenging, and emotionally nurturing time for uninterrupted play freedom to explore and interact with other infants involvement of the child in all care-giving activities to allow them to become an active participant rather than a passive recipient sensitive observation of the child to understand their needs consistency and clearly defined limits and expectations to develop discipline Gerber cautions parents to slow down, to develop the habit of observing before intervening. By narrating what is happening to the child and why, and what will happen next, the child learns about the meaningful sequence of events in its life and can begin to build expectations about the future and acquire a measure of predictability about its life and routines which creates security, comfort and trust in the parents and caregivers. Quality time is watching your child play, uninterrupted, or reading to him, or giving sole focus to feeding him, or diapering or bathing him. Because of this, Gerber encourages parents to reflect on even the routine caregiving moments, because over thousands of repetitions over an infants life they will leave an indelible mark on the relationship and come to represent a sizable proportion of the total quality time spent together do you want your child, even in their limited perceptual state during infancy, to see their diapering as a disgusting task you as a parent have to get over with as quickly and cleanly as possible several times a day, or do you want your child to see that you love them and are interested in them even when doing mundane things like changing their diapers? By treating the relationship respectfully and seeking to include the child in caregiving activities by narrating what is occurring and being present in the moment, the parent is slowly but surely training themselves to see their child not as an obligation to which things must be done, but as another person like themselves with needs and values and a personhood just like other adults they interact with.
I've found a lot of value in principles from the RIE approach to parenting but there are definitely some things I disagree with. 4. Allow your baby alone time to explore and discover things on their own. Request and expect respect back from the child so that your needs are met as well. The RIE approach is to put a baby down sleepy but awake and let them go to sleep on their own. When they start to cry go in and tell them that it is time to sleep and leave again. For example, in the RIE approach, you allow your child to figure things out on their own as they are ready. Don't expect them to do things that they aren't ready to do and aren't age appropriate basically. It seems to me that it is the parent's responsibility to help them get the sleep they need until they are ready to do it on their own. I definitely think we should give children the chance to figure things out and explore on their own, but it is a parents job to facilitate learning and prepare them to face the world.
The writing is abysmal.
That being said, I thought I'd try reading about RIE (Resources for Infant Educarers) for the under 2 crowd. Our daycare's infant room teacher, somebody who I've come to respect as an "educarer" and as a mom (her youngest and mine are born two weeks apart) is a strong believer in it in the classroom and at home, so I thought I'd read up on it since this is how my children are treated at school. It both respects the child and the parent's time and resources...