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Raising Boys in a New Kind of World [Paperback]

Michael Reist
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Dec 24 2011

From video games to the Internet, technology and popular culture are having a profound effect on today's boys. Boys need guidance more than ever. But how can we help them do better in school? How can we keep the lines of communication open?

Raising Boys in a New Kind of World is a passionate call for greater empathy. The more we know about boys, the more realistic our expectations of them will be. We need to stop seeing normal boy behaviour as a problem and learn to understand a boy's need for movement, his unique learning styles, and his personal methods of communicating.

Michael Reist writes from the front lines. As a classroom teacher for more than 30 years and the father of three boys, he has seen first-hand the effects that changes in modern culture are having on boys. Raising Boys in a New Kind of World is an inspiring and entertaining collection of positive, practical advice on many topics, including discipline, homework, video games, and bullying, and provides numerous tips on how to communicate with boys.

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Raising Boys in a New Kind of World + What Every Parent Should Know About School
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Product Details

Product Description


This book creates a compelling argument to show that traits in boys often leading to resistance should be encouraged through a combination of empathy and character building which result in the development of confident citizens who can make positive contributions to our communities.

About the Author

Michael Reist is the author of The Dysfunctional School and has published more than 70 articles on parenting, teaching, spirituality, and popular culture. Audiences across Canada have been inspired by his popular workshop "Boys and Girls Learn Differently." He lives in Caledon East, Ontario.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Reflections from a Practitioner March 22 2012
Reists' book is based on over 30 years of experience as a teacher, a father and a mentor. While this book is not written for an academic or scientific audience, it communicates deep truths about parenting, humanity, boys and girls that I feel touch on some unsettling truths in our culture and society and schools that many of us know exist, but have not been able to name.

Reist's thesis can be summed up to say that, "treating equally does not mean treating the same" when it comes to the education of our children. Each parent, each teacher is asked to consider the biological, social and personal characteristics and needs of their child and to do away with the paradigm of the "factory school" to accept and love and teach that child according to their individual person-hood.

Reist questions the current "sit still and do as you are told", zero-tolerance model of school. He questions the high rates of ADD and ADHD diagnoses among male children. He debunks our fears about video games and social media and delves into the mind and soul of the schoolyard bully. The answer? Rather than suggest anarchy and the end of formal schooling, Reist offers integrity as a possible solution. Without blaming, he spurs teachers and parents to look deeper within themselves to offer the love, mentoring, boundaries and leadership that children require from the adults in their lives.

Since reading this book, I've spoken with about a dozen different parents and teachers whose experiences are a perfect match with Reist's observations about boys.
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My grandson has struggled through his early years at school and is now in grade 10 still with challenges. He was told he is probably ADD but after reading this book I believe a lot of his challenges were more based in the misunderstood learning methods used in the school system as it is today in relation to the way boys learn. Thank you for this encouraging book and I pass on words of encouragement to him too.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great book April 14 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I gave this book as a gift to the parents of my grandsons. I had heard a TV interview with the author and was impressed with his ideas on raising boys. It takes a modern approach to an older theme that boys tend not to do well in traditional school settings, and discusses it in the modern age. Parents of boys would find this book interesting.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent resource Feb. 6 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a great resource for parents of boys, particularly boys entering adolescence. Reist questions and challenges society's definitions and expectations of what is considered normal vs abnormal boy behaviour, based on his many years of experience teaching boys. His commitment to helping boys learn within the context of today's factory school is exemplary. Besides the personal experience and commitment he brings to the topic, I also appreciated the research he's invested in the subject, although at times I wish he'd included in-text citations so that I could follow up on particular ideas or claims in more depth. It has been quite illuminating for me as the parent of an adolescent boy and I enthusiastically recommend it to any parent who has the joy of raising a boy.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
This is one of the most interesting and helpful parenting books I have read. The practical advice and information given on male adolescent development and psychology is supported by a convincing mix of current research and long experience. Add to that Reist's very relevant reflections on cultural trends and the result is a book that models exactly the qualities and skills every parent wishes to offer their children: thoughtfulness, practicality, and reliability.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars high school perspective March 31 2012
I am a high school English teacher whose classes (Grade 9 first semester, Grade 12 second semester) have been heavily populated by boys. In one senior class I have only three girls. You might think Michael Reist's book would be less than helpful for my teaching, since most of the 'raising' of these boys has been done. Not so! Many of his suggestions for using boy energy in a positive way have continued to be helpful right through to graduation. On top of that, understanding how the history of their school experience has impacted my students is invaluable in attempting to readjust the focus and help them regain a sense of empowerment and engagement in the excitement of learning. This is a great book for all educators, parents and perhaps even grandparents. My daughter, a beginning elementary school teacher, will be getting a copy for her birthday. That will be the third copy of this book I've put into circulation. This is a conversation we need to be having, and then let's think about the unique issues facing girls 'in a new kind of world.'
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A MUST-READ FOR EDUCATORS! March 29 2012
The wisdom, logic, simplicity and accessibility of Michael's book is what makes it such a must-read for every parent or teacher.

As an adult female educator who is not a parent, let alone a parent of boys, facing a classroom full of boys on a daily basis can be a daunting task. I currently have a grade ten English class with 24 students; 22 of these are boys. 18 of these boys have IEPs, and two of them are new Canadians who are learning English.

While reading Michael's book, the faces of these diverse young men appeared on the pages in front of me. I have become more tolerent of "boyish play" in my classroom, not mistaking friendly banter with misbehaviour. I have become more aware of the quieter young men in my classroom, and am more careful now not to let the louder, more dominant boys in my class claim all of my attention. I have more realistic expectations for my students' attention spans, and I have built regular movement and transitions into my program to keep them focused and engaged.

Thank-you, Mr. Reist, for helping me to better understand these young men. I am now enjoying going to this class on a daily basis. You have helped me to create a safer classroom.
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