I am reading a book that I wish I had read before I had kids. Not that I can't benefit from it now, but I believe it would have been more beneficial for me while raising young children. You know what I mean.
It is not one of those books that tells you how to raise your kids, how to motivate them or even how to potty train them. It is called, "Why Gender Matters" by Leonard Sax. Laurel took an Educational Psychology class last semester and this book was one of the assigned readings and after reading only half of the book I can see why.
It discusses how male and female brains differ and what areas of the brains each use. The areas of the brain involving language and fine motor skills mature about 6 years earlier in gilrs than in boys, and the area in the brain involved with targeting and spatial memory matures about 4 years earlier in boys than girls. A two year old boy is more likely to be able to build a bridge out of blocks than a 2 year old girl. A 3 year old girl will better be able to distinguish facial expressions as well as or better than a 5 year old boy. Girls will mature faster in some areas, where boys will mature faster in other areas. I liked this point as well. By thirty years of age, both females and males have reached full maturity of all areas of the brain. Yea...it all evens out! I love that.
Did you know that girls hear better than boys? If a teacher is speaking firmly with a slightly raised voice, girls say that the teacher is yelling where boys would not even notice a thing. In fact, it can motivate them. Boys need to sit in the front of the class.
How about this one. Boys and girls are divided into groups with a project or assignment. The group of girls will work together to get the assignment finished even if it means asking for help. You get a group of boys together and they start out alright, but when it gets hard they will not ask for help. They start fooling around. This books says that small groups don't work for boys and why.
The book talks about risk, aggression, school, sex, drugs, discipline and more. I think we have all seen the title of the book titled, Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus, and after reading this book you will know why that statement is true. We use different parts of our brains for the exact same thing so why wouldn't males and females come up with a different way of doing things and learning?
It is a softback book that sells for around $15 and good for us all to read, even dads. There is also a second book written by Leonard Sax titled, Boys Adrift, which discusses under achieving young men and unmotivated boys. I think this book will be very interesting as well.