How to Raise Kind Kids: And Get Respect, Gratitude, and a Happier Family in the Bargain (Paperback)
Can you teach a child to be kind?
This vital question is taking on a new urgency as our culture grows ever more abrasive and divided.
We all want our kids to be kind. But that is not the same as knowing what to do when you catch your son being unkind. A world-renowned developmental psychologist, Dr. Thomas Lickona has led the character education movement in schools for forty years. Now he shares with parents the vital tools they need to bring peace and foster cooperation at home. Kindness doesn’t stand on its own. It needs a supporting cast of other essential virtues—like courage, self-control, respect, and gratitude.
With concrete examples drawn from the many families Dr. Lickona has worked with over the years and clear tips you can act on tonight, How to Raise Kind Kids will help you give and get respect, hold family meetings to tackle persistent problems, discipline in a way that builds character, and improve the dynamic of your relationship with your children while putting them on the path to a happier and more fulfilling life.
About the Author
DR. THOMAS LICKONA is a developmental psychologist and longtime professor of education whose eight books on character education include Raising Good Children and Educating for Character. A past president of the Association for Moral Education, he received the “Sandy” Award for Lifetime Achievement in Character Education.
“Using cutting-edge advances in moral development, brain research, and traditional wisdom, [Lickona] shares strategies for promoting kindness in an era of toxic political and entitlement culture. . . . Chock-full of straightforward tips and principles for creating a home that cultivates empathy, this work offers essential advice for all parents and teachers interested in character development.”
“This book is ideal for all parents wondering how to compete with cultural factors that make raising kind kids a challenge . . . This will be a useful read for any parents, including homeschoolers, regardless of their secular or theological curriculum or approach to parenting.”
“Timely. Crucial. Practical. How to Raise Kind Kids is a must read in a culture where the sole benchmarks of success are grades, ranks, and scores. Written by the leading expert in child character development, every page is filled with captivating stories and sound insights on how to help our kids become good and compassionate people. If we practice Dr. Lickona’s wise and proven advice we will raise a generation of thriving, kind-hearted kids who want to better the world. What better legacy could there be?”
—Michele Borba, Educational Psychologist and bestselling author of UnSelfie: Why Empathetic Kids Succeed in Our All-About-Me World
“Every so often there comes a book that is as satisfying intellectually as it is useful. Not only does this wonderful book raise interesting issues of morality, it provides a practical guide to ensure that children are brought up to be kind and good citizens. In uncaring and confusing times, what could be a more worthwhile project?”
—Alexander McCall Smith, author of The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency Series
“Tom Lickona is an American hero. I don’t know anyone who has done more to help parents and educators raise children who care about the greater good. In this wonderfully wise, engaging book, he nimbly draws from many disciplines to inform the ‘art’ of parenting to cultivate kindness, bravely wading into the muddy challenges parents face today, including our toxic political culture, addiction to screens, and a parenting culture that can fuel entitlement.”
—Dr. Richard Weissbourd, co-Director of Harvard University’s Making Caring Common program and author of The Parents We Mean to Be
“Parents, educators and perhaps all society owe Tom Lickona a debt of gratitude for this latest contribution in his lifelong quest to develop in young people the ability to know the good, want the good, and do the good. He combines the skills of a first-class scholar and an adept storyteller to present a blueprint for instilling in children the vital virtues of compassion, empathy, and social responsibility. It should be a basic text for all those who take the job of parenting seriously.”
—Michael Josephson, Founding President of the Josephson Institute of Ethics
“Today’s children are faced with a plethora of distractions, especially from electronics, which can affect their ability to listen and be sensitive to the presence of others. Dr. Lickona reminds us that kindness begins in the home with positive parenting but also depends on leaders who are positive role models.”
—David P. Sortino, author of A Guide to How Your Child Learns: Understanding the Brain from Infancy to Early Adulthood
“A treasure trove of traditional wisdom backed by modern science that should grace every parent’s nightstand.”
—Michelle Cretella, MD, FCP, President of the American College of Pediatricians
“Over the last thirty years, no one has surfaced more useable research and practical wisdom on character formation than Tom Lickona. Now he brings together the best of his insights in a book filled with helpful information and real-world advice. This is the ideal book for thoughtful parents and teachers.”
—Kevin Ryan, Director Emeritus of Boston University’s Center for Character and Social Justice
“Reading this essential book was addictive. It addresses the character issues we must face if we hope to build a better, more productive, and happier society.”
—Doug Karr, President and CEO, Character.org
“A gold mine of practical suggestions for bringing out the best in our kids.”
—Hal Urban, Author of Life’s Greatest Lessons
“This wise and practical book reminds us that in a world where children often lack a shared moral lexicon, the indispensable virtue of kindness has the power to increase their life satisfaction and bring many benefits both to them and their parents.”
—James Arthur, Director of the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues
“How to Raise Kind Kids masterfully weaves Dr. Lickona’s deep human sensitivity together with strands of age-old wisdom, practical experience, and compelling findings from 21st-century research. A rich parental resource for nurturing kindness—and character—in kids.”
—David Streight, Former Executive Director, the Center for Spiritual and Ethical Education