Last year The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother came out, talking about how Asian mothers are superior and turn out superior children. All about discipline and no TV and threatening to withhold food until piano pieces are learned, no playdates, calling children names and the like to get them to perform and do their best. I don't personally agree with this method, but I see some of the merits, pushing children to do their best and not let them give up easily...within reason. Recently The Today Show had a woman on who's written a new book: Bringing up Bebe: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting. This woman talks about the fact that French parents give their children quite a bit of freedom with a few strict rules that must be obeyed but don't cater to their children or insist they have a million and one lessons to do after school, that sort of thing. According to the author, French children are better behaved than the average American children.
Couple this with an article I read asking if we need an end-all, be-all book on parenting. Is there such a thing? I seriously doubt it. Why do we need to copy other countries' parenting methods? I see that each has its merits, but there's no magic bullet. You just have to do your best, use common sense, and, in my opinion, raise your children to be respectful, self-sufficient, and eager to learn and do all they can, to be the best versions of themselves possible. However, hopefully I can teach my own son that along the way he'll make lots of mistakes, and that's all right as well. I want him to be happy and kind, to try his best at what he attempts and see when persistence changes to sheer stubbornness. So I guess a dash of Tiger Mother, a pinch of French parenting, a tablespoon or two of John Rosemond for common sense, and my own instincts will have to do. I think that'll work out, don't you?