The Happiest Toddler on the Block: The New Way to Stop the Daily Battle of Wills and Raise a Secure and Well-Behaved One- to Four-Year-Old Paperback – May 31 2005
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From Publishers Weekly
California-based pediatrician Karp offers a unique approach to the tantrums, melt-downs and overriding challenges that often accompany the demanding years from one to four. Viewing toddlers as primitive thinkers akin to prehistoric man, Karp divides his patients into developmental groups: the "Charming Chimp-Child" (12 to 18 months), the "Knee-High Neanderthal" (18 to 24 months), the "Clever Cave-Kid" (24 to 36 months) and the "Versatile Villager" (36 to 48 months). Parents may find the toddler years so frustrating, Karp suggests, because they don't speak their child's language. To deal effectively with the undeveloped brains of toddlers, one must understand "Toddler-ese," he says, a method of talking to youngsters that employs short phrases, repetition, a dramatic tone of voice and the use of body language. Although the author admits parents may feel foolish speaking in this manner, he nevertheless maintains that the approach soothes children by respecting their needs. Additionally, Karp offers suggestions for positive discipline (e.g., loss of privileges and time out) and guides parents through early expected milestones, while acknowledging that a child's individual temperament (e.g., easy, cautious, spirited) will uniquely influence the pace of his or her development. While some readers may find the relentless cave-kid metaphors irksome, Karp's gentle, easygoing tone is soothing and offers new hope and strategies to those who may have given up on making sense of the toddler years.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
"Karp offers a unique approach to the tantrums, melt-downs and overriding challenges that often accompany the demanding years from one to four.... Soothing and offers new hope and strategies to those who may have given up on making sense of the toddler years."—Publishers Weekly
“You want help? This is r-e-a-l help! The Happiest Toddler on the Block is one of the smartest parenting books of the past decade. Over and over, parents will find themselves proclaiming, "Thanks, Dr. Karp…Now I get it! “—Kyle Pruett, MD, Professor of Child Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine and author of Fatherneed: Why Fathercare is as Essential as Mother Care for Your Child
"Dr. Karp's approach is terrific...and fun! His book will help parents, grandparents and everyone who cares for toddlers be more effective."—Martin Stein, MD, Professor of Pediatrics, University of California San Diego, Children's Hospital San Diego
"Dr. Karp helps parents turn the "terrible" twos into "terrific" twos. His work will revolutionize the way our culture understands toddlers!"—Roni Cohen Leiderman, PhD, Associate Dean, Mailman Segal Institute for Early Childhood Studies, Nova Southeastern University
“Dr. Karp has done it again! Parents will find reading The Happiest Toddler on the Block a joyous adventure…with pearls of wisdom waiting for them on every page.”—Morris Green, MD, Director, Behavioral Pediatrics, Indiana University, Riley Hospital for Children, editor, Pediatric Diagnosis
“Dr. Karp's excellent approach gives parents the tools they need. His simple methods make raising rambunctious toddlers a whole lot easier.”—Steven Shelov, MD, Editor in chief of American Academy of Pediatrics’ Caring for Your Baby and Young Child
“Dr. Karp’s new book is an innovative, unique and thoroughly enjoyable guide to toddler behavior!” —Donald Middleton, MD, Professor of Family Medicine, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.
"Parents will be delighted by this clever approach to communicating with toddlers. It allows us to see the world from our children's unique point of view."—Janet Serwint, Professor of Pediatrics, Director of the Harriet Lane Children’s Clinic, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine
"It really works! With great humor and a gentle touch, Dr. Karp shows how to raise happy, well-behaved toddlers. His book is invaluable.—Gabrielle Redford, Senior Editor, AARP The Magazine (and mother of 17-month-old twins)
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Top Customer Reviews
The only suggestion in the book that I have a problem with is using a hook and eye latch to lock a child in his room even for a very short time-out. I feel this can be scary for the child and although it may get the child to know that you do mean business, I prefer not to get compliance from my children with fear, guilt or humiliation. Karp does suggest that you explain to the child in "toddler-ese" how the locking mechanism works so that he will know the door will not open when mom uses it.
I also recommend another one of my favorite parenting reference books as a compliment to Karp's hardcover book called "The Pocket Parent". This is a very practical, quick read, little paperback book loaded with many positive discipline and communications tips written exclusively for parents of 2-5 year olds. Peppered with humor and organized alphabetically by behaviors such as: Anger, Bad Words, Biting, Bedtime and Mealtime Refusals, the "Gimmees", Interrrupting, Morning "Crazies", and Whining...Pocket Parent is a real sanity saver. Both books will lift your spirits with specific ideas to try as well as loads of compassionte support from authors that have been there, too... especially when you feel you are just about at your wits' end with the little ones.
I believe that we do have to simplify for the child to understand better, but i don't think we have to act like primates just because our little ones have underdeveloped brains!
techniques, I could not wait to watch The Happiest Toddler on the Block
by Harvey Karp,M.D.
My 22 month old grandson began to scream when I told him it was time to
go inside. I spoke "toddlerese" with much expression as suggested by Dr.
I said, " No No No" you do not want to go inside.
He looked at me very surprised.
I said, "No No No" you do not want to go inside.
He looked at me again with his mouth wide open.
I said again, "No No No you do not want to go
inside, but we must take sister to potty."
---------he came with me without protest. In the past he
would have continued screaming for about 5 minutes and
I would have picked him up kicking and screaming.
Now I can't wait to read the book The Happiest Toddler on the Block Book to get
more helpful suggestions for the children in my family and in my
Phyllis Meer,RN, BSN,CPNP
and proud grandmother of 4.
In this book, he has a theory that your child needs to feel understood and you should let them know you understand them by repeating back to them what they just told you, then empathizing. In their words, at their level. ("The Fast Food Rule") That's ALL. The book is full of examples and uses a caveman analogy to get its point across, but basically the message reiterated is the same or a variation on the Fast Food Rule. The video that accompanies this book is only 37 minutes long!
The "Happiest Baby, INC." trademark on the back says it all, I suppose. The main goal here seems to have been to turn out a sequel and fluff it up as much as possible to generate maximum profit.
I happened to read a snippet about Dr. Karp's book in The New York Times' Science Times section. When I read about his concept that toddlers are basically Neanderthals, I thought he was definitely onto something (I always referred to my son as Bam-Bam from The Flintstones!). With my interest piqued enough, I ordered the book from Amazon.
After a couple of days, I tried Dr. Karp's Prehistoric Parenting method. I was shocked when after a couple of times repeating "You want mommy. You REAALLLY WANT MOMMY!!", my son stopped his tantrum; looked at me; and simply said, "Sorry!" It was like a revelation.
I love that you don't need to read every chapter in its entirety. When stuff about kids older than 3 years old came up, I went straight to the next chapter, since my son is almost 2.
My only criticism is that a lot of ideas are repeated over to a fault. But I could live with that. Dr. Karp is just trying to reiterate his messages.
Overall, I give this a 5 star rating for the sheer fact that the Dr. Karp's method of Prehistoric Parenting and speaking Toddler-ese really does work!
Do yourself a favor and buy this book. You won't be sorry. In fact, you'll be relieved!
Most recent customer reviews
I liked the book very much. The techniques suggested are easy to follow and make sense. I liked reading the many examples too.Published 12 months ago by Nuno C.
I read Ther happiest baby on the block when my little girls was born and it was really helpful for my and my husband. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Cynthia Rodríguez
Bought that for my daughter who lives in Switzerland.....but found out that they can buy these books over there too.....apparently VERY helpful booksPublished 22 months ago by Ursula Portz
I am a psychoeducater. I work with preschool children experiencing developpemental delays and behavior difficulties. I work with their parents and daycare educators. Read morePublished 23 months ago by Carole Lapointe
With success from Happiest Baby, we were drawn to the follow up. Expectations met or exceeded. His writing style is compatible with many readers, and I mainly like that he roots... Read morePublished on Dec 4 2012 by Dave DeVisser
Absolutely great,works fantastic,very easy written.a must have for every household with toddlers (little cave man how he describes them) very worth the money.Published on Jan. 14 2012 by Puki