This book is a very detailed, comprehensive, and practical resource for parents of kids with social issues that are happening for a variety of reasons. It is written by clinical child psychologists who have lots of experience working with kids with learning difficulties and ADHD. It seems most applicable to children without a clinical diagnosis, or children with ADHD, learning disabilities, or milder anxiety/mood issues and behaviour difficulties. Some of the ideas may be appropriate for Asperger's/high functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder- however this book is not specific to those children and does not seem to have enough content that is specifically targeted to their needs.
This book is organized into chapters around different child “personality types", kind of like the different faces of social difficulty. The chapters are, The Vulnerable Child, The Intimidating Child, The Different Drummer, The Shy Child, The Short-Fused Child, The Little Adult, The Sensitive Soul, The Born Leader, and The Pessimistic Child. Parents of children who are struggling with things like self-control, lack of assertiveness, low self esteem, bossiness, frustration, worries, aggression, sensitivity or difficulty fitting in are likely to find help in these pages.
Each chapter describes the kinds of difficulties the child may be having, and then gives specific tips, strategies, and activities for addressing their needs. For example, the chapter on the "Vulnerable Child" addresses bullying. In terms of kids who are being bullied and are struggling to be assertive, the authors suggest strategies such as practicing confident body language and assertive responses, building confidence by finding activities the child can be successful at, and teaching the child to join a safe group. In terms of kids who are being bullied and tend to "provoke" this (e.g., by engaging in annoying behaviours and/or seeking out bullies), suggested strategies are teaching the child to monitor and be aware of their behaviours, teaching the child to learn to respect personal space and keep their voice at the right volume, teaching the child to recognize when others are annoyed, teaching the child to identify the chain of events that led to bullying situations, and helping the child explore different options for how to deal with bullying, while taking into account how others may respond. The authors also talk of how about ideas for dealing with kids who are temporarily mean or unfriendly, such as choosing to be friends with kind people, learning how to weather short stormy patches, finding a good-fit individual in a group of kids, and being willing to try new friends.
Overall, I found this book to be chock-full of practical advice while taking an empowering and positive tone. Highly recommended.