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The Enchanted Hour: The Miraculous Power of Reading Aloud in the Age of Distraction
Gurdon, Meghan Cox
A Wall Street Journal writer’s conversation-changing look at how reading aloud makes adults and children smarter, happier, healthier, more successful and more closely attached, even as technology pulls in the other direction.A miraculous alchemy occurs when one person reads to another, transforming the simple stuff of a book, a voice, and a bit of time into complex and powerful fuel for the heart, brain, and imagination. Grounded in the latest neuroscience and behavioral research, and drawing widely from literature, The Enchanted Hour explains the dazzling cognitive and social-emotional benefits that await children, whatever their class, nationality or family background. But it’s not just about bedtime stories for little kids: Reading aloud consoles, uplifts and invigorates at every age, deepening the intellectual lives and emotional well-being of teenagers and adults, too.Meghan Cox Gurdon argues that this ancient practice is a fast-working antidote to the fractured attention spans, atomized families and unfulfilling ephemera of the tech era, helping to replenish what our devices are leaching away. For everyone, reading aloud engages the mind in complex narratives; for children, it’s an irreplaceable gift that builds vocabulary, fosters imagination, and kindles a lifelong appreciation of language, stories and pictures.Bringing together the latest scientific research, practical tips, and reading recommendations, The Enchanted Hour will both charm and galvanize, inspiring readers to share this invaluable, life-altering tradition with the people they love most.
Harvard's Center on the Developing Child found that every kid who succeeds in the face of adversity has had at least one committed relationship with a supportive adult. But Josh Shipp didn't need Harvard to understand that. Once an at-risk foster kid, he was facing down a bleak future that was likely to include prison or homelessness--until he met the grown-up who changed his life. Enter Rodney, the foster parent who refused to quit on Shipp and finally got him to believe in himself.Now, in The Grown-Up's Guide to Teenage Humans, Shipp shows us how to be that sort of caring adult in a teenager's life. Stressing the need for mutual respect, trust, and encouragement,he identifies three key mindsets crucial to understanding teens. He breaks down the distinct phases of teenage life, examining the challenges at each phase, and offers revelatory stories that take us deep inside the teen brain.Shipp also shares field-tested,game-changing strategies from top professionals and provides word-for-word scripts that troubleshoot over twenty common teen issues,including:• OWNERSHIP: When my teen messes up, how can I help them take ownership?• COMMUNICATION: How do I get a teen to talk to me? They just grunt.• TRUST: My teen blew it and lost my trust. Where do we go from here?• BULLYING: Help! A teen is being harassed--online or face-to-face.• DIFFICULT & AWKWARD CONVERSATIONS: Drugs. Death. Sex. Oh my.Written in Shipp's playful but authoritative voice,The Grown-Up's Guide to Teenage Humans lays out unflinchingly practical ways to make a difference in a teen's life. As Shipp reminds us, raising a respectable adult comes down to investing in teens and giving them the boundaries, time, and support they need to thrive. And that means every kid is one caring adult away from being a success story.
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