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Yes, it's a behavioral training handbook for the layman. It's mostly about animal training, but she also applies it to people, saying that behaviorally training those around you isn't as slimy as it sounds, since we all manipulate each other all the time - she's just admitting it. I have to admit that although I enjoyed the book (which I read years ago for dog training suggestions!), the people-training part continued to feel a little slimy to me. She also wrote Nursing Your Baby, which I read to get me through early bf problems and was very very helpful - and along w/ "trouble-shooting" she explains the physiological processes of bf'ing in great depth & detail, which was fascinating.
 

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I am really leery of anyone who is an 'expert' on both animal training and parenting.

There are alot of similarities, and there are alot of things that are helpful with both (like patience, sense of humor, keeping the desired end result in mind).

However, those similarities should be looked at as curiosities, and something to keep in mind-definitely not as a guidebook for training animals/humans interchangeably.

My favorite dog training book is by the Monks of New Skete-fantastic training book. (Just to let you know where I'm coming from, I train stock dogs)

However, I would not use their training method, or even a variation of it to train my kids. (I also like Karen Pryor's book and would not use it for child rearing either.)

I'm raising children, not training them.

I think the biggest difference that most people don't realize is that dogs and humans have INCREDIBLY different social setups. A dog must either be top-dog or under-dog. Cut and dried. It's the way they're wired. There is nothing more dangerous than a dog that has never learned where they sit in relation to humans. There is no happier dog than one who is confident of their place as a lower placed member of the family.

Humans interact the healthiest when they interact interdependently. A far cry from a dog's natural way of interacting. It would be incredibly insulting for me to use dog training methods-even the gentlest-on my daughter. She's more intelligent than that, and that's setting her up for a lifetime of dependency and taking orders.
 

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I haven't read it. It sounds horribly disrespectful of children. Please consider the book "Unconditional Parenting" by Alfie Kohn. He has well documented and anotated research describing the damage that behavior modification does to human children. Another of his books is "Punished By Rewards". Child training and behavior modification can be done; but it doesn't nurture intrinsic motivation and subjects children's self-esteem to external judgement and extrinsic motivation.


Pat
 

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I'm not a big fan of training, either, but I do try to recognize and show gratitude for certain "behaviors." It isn't contrived or insincere, but genuine appreciation. I'm thinking, for instance, of my son spilling juice on the floor and cleaning it up without me even bringing it up. But on some levels, I guess that could be an external motivator.

Food for thought.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Balanced Mama
I'm not a big fan of training, either, but I do try to recognize and show gratitude for certain "behaviors." It isn't contrived or insincere, but genuine appreciation. I'm thinking, for instance, of my son spilling juice on the floor and cleaning it up without me even bringing it up. But on some levels, I guess that could be an external motivator.

Food for thought.
I believe there is a difference between expressing sincere, authentic appreciation and gratitude vs. praise with the intent of behavior modification. There wasn't any difference in my family of origin however. It took me a long time to see any type of praise as not having the intent to alter my behavior. I had learned well that expected behavior was externally rewarded. And when the rewards/consequences were absent, internal motivation was difficult to summon or acted upon without concern for lack of consequences. I was dependent upon rules/consequences to guide my actions.

For instance, if no one was looking, we could sneak out and party on the back porch. But, the internal motivation not to do so, didn't exist. Until we got caught and then the external consequences modified my behavior. An internal compass isn't possible to guide one if external motivation/consequences overpowers it, imo.

Pat
 

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I've sold several copies of it. It's really more a primer on the types of discipline, or behavior modification, which exist. She guides the reader through the many categories of behavior modification, and points them in the direction of positive reinforcement as the most powerful way to relate, and punishment as the least effective way to communicate.

I'd say it's a very good book for a person who needs an easy introduction into the reasons for positive, rather than negative, reinforcement.

It's the kind of book you might give a skeptical grandparent, father to be, or anyone who was curious but stand-off-ish about postive discipline.
 
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