If you are like me (let’s hope you aren’t) and slightly neurotic about your child’s education, preparation and development, then this book is highly entertaining. A how-to? No, not really. Unless you consider hours of music practice a day (for both mother and child) including weekends and vacations a good method.
If you are a laid-back-fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants type then you’ll probably hate this book and become outraged that the children weren’t given a chance to “be children.”
Though somewhat exaggerated, there are some great points and thoughts I took from the book.
1) Chinese people are not outrageously successful in sports, business and technology by coincidence. They are hard-working and focused and raise children that way. Kids learn to work hard at a young age and if we don’t teach it, they’ll have a hard time picking it up later.
2) Western parents underestimate a child’s ability to work hard and still turn out okay. We shouldn’t coddle, spoil and shelter and particularly not because we are worried about their confidence.
3) It is perfectly okay to make kids do some things they don’t want to do. In fact, it’s good for them. Letting your kids grow up thinking they never have to do anything that isn’t their idea will set them up for some major disappointment and, might I add, reality checks.
All in all, if you read it as a satirical memoir as the author intended, you will be entertained.
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