I am cringing a bit as I look at this title.  Yet I’m keeping it.  All you who are constantly around young children understand.  What’s cheesy to grown-ups translates into wit and fun for children, and when you’re in that zone, you’re in it; it’s hard to escape even when your conversation is with an older audience.  Thanks for understanding.  😉

My friend Nicole has been a huge resource to me when it comes to parenting and family.  She hits gold mine after gold mine.  She recommended a book that, true to her record, has become a much valued treasure in our family library.  It is called Hints on Child Training, by H. Clay Trumbull.  The forward for this most recent edition (the book was written over 100 years ago) was written by a man who my husband and I, and both sets of our parents, greatly respect, Gregg Harris.  

Although I believe reading this book would sizably enhance anyone’s interaction with children, even if you haven’t read this book, please join in this discussion.  Let’s go through this book, chapter by chapter, and share thoughts, opinions, and experiences that might be of encouragement in the adventure in parenting, grandparenting, uncling, aunting, and childcaring.

Chapter 1:  Child Training, What is it?

The term “training,” like the term “teaching,” is used in various senses; hence it is liable to be differently understood by different persons, when applied to a single department of a parent’s duties in the bringing up of his children.  Indeed, the terms “training” and “teaching” are often used interchangeably, as covering the entire process of a child’s education…

Child training includes the directing and controlling and shaping of a child’s feelings and thoughts and words and ways in every sphere of his life-course, from his birth to the close of his childhood.  And that this is no unimportant part of a child’s upbringing, no intelligent mind will venture to question.

As you can already see, this book is a bit counter-culture.  The last statement probably raised a few red flags in some people.  Controlling a child’s feelings?   Now don’t jump ship just yet.  Although this sounds like it might be endorsing a dictator-style parenting, if you know me, you know I would never align myself with such thoughts.  We’re starting at chapter one, and much will be explained in the following chapters.  But for now, what are your thoughts on “child training?”  Do you think we have even been given that type of control over our children’s feelings?  If so, how do we help them navigate those waters of emotions and how to express them?  Trust me, the topic of conversation will get more and more interesting, but this will be a good place to start so we can get a feel where each of us is coming from in our parenting/child training methods.
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